It only makes sense that Brazilian musician Gilberto Gil is this year’s “Guest of Honor” at the fifthCairo Jazz Festival. Each year, the festival pays tribute to a major musician who has influenced the genre of jazz, such as Egypt’s Omar Khairat and Lebanon’s Ziad Rahbani.
Gil is something of a phenomenon. Since the 1960s, he has pioneered new forms of music by blending together bossa nova, rock, reggae, folk, jazz, samba and African genres. His self-contained musical style is virtually inimitable.
Along the way, Gil’s socio-political infused songs reflected his activist roots and cries for change, prompting the Brazilian military junta to exile him.
The Cairo Jazz Festival kicks off on 21 March and continues until 23 March