The 51st edition of the Nice Jazz Festival got underway Tuesday and it was off to a good start. Unlike last year when torrential rain dampened the festivities, the weather was perfect for Nice’s most popular music festival. The saxophonist Nubya Garcia began the evening at the Theatre de Verdure stage followed by the mellow sounds of the Fred Hersch Trio. Unfortunately the delicate sounds of the trio were somewhat drowned out by the much louder soul sounds of the Nigerian singer Jacob Banks at the Massena stage. A Christian McBride Situation with DJ Logic fared much better and brought audience to their feet with their foot-stomping rhythms. Singer Alyson Williams was a particular stand-out. The evening wrapped up with legendary Nile Rodgers & Chic who got the crowd jumping to their biggest hits: Let’s Dance, Get Lucky, C’est Chic, I’ll Be There and more.
Nice’s transport infrastructure is undergoing massive changes and it’s all good. When work is completed around the end of the year Nice will be cleaner, greener and much easier to get around. But we’re not there yet! The east-west tramway, Ligne 2, has now been extended to av Jean Medecin but work is continuing well into the fall when it will finally reach its terminus at Nice Port. Meanwhile, there are important changes that have taken effect right now and others that will take effect September 2. Here’ what you need to know:
- Although tram line 2 is in service, hours are shorter than they will be this fall. From Sunday to Thursday, the trams from CADAM start running at 5.30am with the last train leaving the station at 8.45pm. The trams from the Airport start at 6.10am from Terminal 2 and the last one leaves at 7.49pm. From Jean Medecin the first tram leaves at 6.02am and the last at 9.20pm.
On Fridays and Saturdays the last tram leaves Jean Medecin at 1.05am and the last tram leaves CADAM at 12.31am. From Terminal 2 the last tram leaves at 12.10am. (Get details on Nice tramways)
- Airport buses 98 and 99 have been eliminated. Instead there is a new line, Aeroport Direct, that will provide service to the airport but only when tram line 2 is not running. Here are the schedules:
3. The price stays at €1.50 (€1 with a 10-voyage card) for all trips. The former airport buses cost €6 but now a journey to or from the airport costs the same as any other trip.
4. Keep your ticket! There are now machines at the Jean Medecin and Alsace Lorraine exits; you’ll need to insert your validated card in order to leave.
5. On September 2 an entirely new bus network will go into service. Designed to complement the new tram line 2, the new system will keep some buses, combine the routes of others and launch entirely new lines. Nice’s night buses, the Noctambus, will be eliminated because a handful of lines will run as late as the tram lines and coordinate with them. Check out the 2019 changes in Nice buses, see maps of the old and new Nice bus routes, and download the new schedules (in French) on the Lignes d’Azur website.
Jazz fans have a special treat this Friday when jazz singer Patricia Barber appears at the Forum Nice Nord.
A deep voice, mesmerizing climates, rhythms as arose from the bowels of the earth … Like Nina Simone or Shirley Horn, Patricia Barber accompanies herself on the piano. An elegant singer and pianist emeritus, she gained a flattering reputation from her debut album “Distortion of Love” in 1992. An admiration that never ceased for the one nicknamed “a pure sigh that comes from the soul “. Avant-garde creator, she devotes her work to the great repertoire, adorning it with a thousand gospel inspirations, contemporary, classical, but still noticeably jazz. Patricia Barber is one of those very few jazz musicians who combine artistic sophistication and critical recognition.
Brilliant pianist, endowed with a sharp melodic sense, inspired and often biting, Patricia Barber sings with a disturbing voice her own melodies and lyrics, interprets the standards (of Cole Porter) with intelligence, distance, sensuality. A great lady of vocal jazz to discover or rediscover as part of the Nice Jazz Festival Sessions.
The evening, sure to be memorable begins with the Nice Trio featuring Frederic d’Oelsnitz : piano – Jean-Marc Jafet : bass – Alain Asplanato : batterie.