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Jazz à Juan 1996
The King of the Blues played a supreme set at the Juan-les-Pins festival in 1996. His relationship with the place was both personal, and spiritual, in a sense – while BB was considered by many to be the living inheritant of the blues, the town of Juan-les-Pins is part of jazz' lineage, twinned with the music's very own cradle, New Orleans. It was maybe for that reason that BB felt so at home there, once famously saying: "I love juan. In Juan, I feel like a fish in water." He played at the festival several times and seemed to raise his game every time he came to Southern France, knowing that the audience basked in his every note.
With his Gibson "Lucille" singing sweet notes into the night air, he addresses the public: "this is my way of reminiscing ... I'm seventy years old ... when I look at all of you and I think how lucky I am to be alive around to see all your beautiful, young smiling faces." he proceeds to launch into a masterful version of "Blues Man," before tackling some of his famous pieces, including "Rock Me, Baby," "Five Long Years" and Gues Who." There is only one BB King, and he shows his rare prowess in this concert, where everything flowed as perfectly as ever, the way only BB could make it go.
Thursday, February 29, 2024