Jazz on Instagram

"Jazz is restless. It won’t stay put and it never will." - J.J. Johnson, Jazz Trombonist

Born in the American south and matured in the African-American neighborhoods of early-1900s New York City, jazz music is a genre unlike any other. Though many argue exactly what defines jazz music, it is marked by extensive improvisation and expressive, “blue notes.” Over the last century, jazz has seen a vibrant evolution from the Jazz Age of the 1920s and 30s with its figureheads like Louis Armstrong. As jazz became more popular in the United States, it also expanded to Europe and beyond with artists like Django Reinhardt gaining notoriety. As the decades progressed, sub-genres such as smooth jazz and jazz fusion emerged, each with their own top performers as well.

Today, jazz encompasses a sweeping range of styles with many artists varying throughout their career or adopting jazz influences in rock and pop music. To tune in to the lives and work of some the best contemporary jazzists, follow musicians Cassandra Wilson (@reallycassandra), Vijay Iyer (@vijayiyer), Christian McBride (@chrmcbride) and Jamie Cullum (@jamiecullum).

To explore even more jazz on Instagram, check out the location pages for the following jazz clubs around the world to see photos and videos from nightly performances.