North Sea Jazz Festival, 07/07/2023

North Sea Jazz Festival 2023 Logo (

Concert information

Festival North Sea Jazz Festival
Date 07/07/2023 (also see 07/08/2023 and 07/09/2023)
Venue Ahoy
City Rotterdam
Country The Netherlands
Line-up (witnessed) Maria Schneider & Oslo Jazz Ensemble, Yaya Bey, Van Morrison, Mavis Staples, Fred Hersch & Esperanza Spalding, Buddy Guy, Little Simz, Mononeon, Stormzy


Day 1 of the greatest festival I know.

Together with Zühal and both my sons we started off quitely with a couple of short stops: Maria Schneider and Yaya Bey. Yaya Bey was a bit uneventful, but due to a technical error she started improvising, which led to the day’s first highlight.

Off to Van Morrison, just becuase he was there. A bucket-list candidate, without having too high hopes. His image of stand-off and grumpiness is legendary, but he was in a great mood. It took a while to get warmed up, but when the show gelled, it was really. Contrary to what i had planned, i watched the entire show.

After a short visit to Mavis Staples (seen her before at eralier editions of the festival) and a let-down show by Fred Hersch & Esperanza Spalding, off to see Buddy Guy, who is underway with his Damn Right Farewell tour. The 86 (!) year old didn’t disappoint. He shredded his guitar and touched the audience, who was mesmerized by him. Nothing but the deepest respect for Buddy Guy!

And then there was Little Simz. English hip-hop, no back-up band, but large video walls, the projections actually adding to the show. And some show it was! Little Simz spat her raps into the mic with full energy and was having the time of her life. The difference in age between Buddy Guy and Little Simz is nearly 60 years, but they are both made from the same cloth: play with conviction. Little Simz won over everyone!

Following a short stop at Mononeon, who was a bit too bland, off to see Stormzy, that other exponent of Britisch hip-hop. Where Little Simz prevailed, Stormzy was a major let-down. Too little adventure. The audience checked out and the show never (re)gained its flow. Too bad.

Artist Seen whole show? Rating
Maria Schneider & Oslo Jazz Ensemble No
Yaya Bey No
Van Morrison Yes
Mavis Staples No
Fred Hersch & Esperanza Spalding No
Buddy Guy Yes
Little Simz Yes
Mononeon No
Stormzy No


Buddy Guy

Damn Right, I’ve Got The Blues / I’m Your Hoochie Coochie Man / She’s Nineteen Years Old / Cheaper To Keep Her / I Just Want To Make Love To You / Crazy ‘Bout You / Grits Ain’t Groceries / Five Long Years / How Blue Can You Get? / Someone Else Is Steppin’ In / Boom Boom / Voodoo Child (Slight Return) / Skin Deep / We Gonna Move (To The Outskirts Of Town) / Little By Little / I Let My Guitar Do The Talking / Fever

Little Simz

Silhouette / No Merci / X / Two Worlds Apart / I Love You, I Hate You / might bang, might not / 101 FM / Venom / Heart On Fire / (new song) / Introvert / Gorilla / Point And Kill / Fear No Man / Selfish / Woman

Concert ticket

North Sea Jazz Festival 07/08/09-07-2023 concertkaartje (

North Sea Jazz festival Poster

North Sea Jazz 2023 Poster (

Compliments/remarks? Yes, please!