Green Pilot Tours

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Guy Salamon Group - Green Pilot Tour

"Making a green, environmentally-aware tour is both a very important mission and a very challenging one... In Catalunya, where the tour took place, it was apparent that some of the infrastructure necessary to support a green tour just wasn’t fully there yet. That created great difficulties for us at times and forced us to find new solutions on the go. On the other hand, the entire notion of the green pilot tour often raised important and healthy discussions and awareness, whether among the band members themselves, with the venues and staff or with the public audience." Guy Salamon
The tour
In March 2023, the Amsterdam-based Guy Salamon Group, which aims to be a climate-positive collective, toured Catalunya on a nine-day tour. It included a mix of five regular concerts, one showcase concert at Jazz I Am, two quintet gigs and two workshops with students.

The tour was a partnership between the Guy Salamon Group, Netherlands promoter InJazz and music school Taller de Músics in Barcelona. It was supported by EJN’s Green Pilot Tour initiative.

Touring with composer, arranger and drummer Guy were Irene Reig and Lucas Martinez on saxophone, Brodie Jarvie on double bass, Alistair Payne and Ian Cleaver on trumpet, Teis Semey on guitar and Xavi Torres on piano.

Touring more sustainably
The group flew to Barcelona and to compensate for the carbon emissions, twelve trees were planted by Asociación Reforesta, a Spanish non-profit dedicated to sustainable development.

Once in Catalonia, the group used electric cars and shared an apartment which they used as a base for the tour and where they cooked for themselves. They were keen to avoid staying in hotels, which can produce large amounts of waste. The group also avoided use of plastics during the tour. No merchandise was produced though they did take a small number of CDs. 

During planning, the possibility of some quintet gigs with local musicians came up. This provided Guy with the opportunity to arrange his music for smaller groups and thus created a basis for future tours and collaboration with the Catalunyan jazz scene.

The group also made the most of the tour, which included new material written by Guy, by booking a studio in Girona immediately afterwards to record their third album. This extended the Catalunya connection and networks, and involved minimum further travel and lodging costs, given the group has members from six different countries.

The biggest challenge was dealing with sustainability expectations during the tour itself. Mark from InJazz observes:

“While planning, you can think of many things you want to do, but when you are actually touring there are all kinds of unforeseen circumstances. Electric cars not working properly was one of the most frustrating challenges, leading to lost sleep, extra expenses and having to swap to a regular car on one occasion. 

Another example was when a venue didn’t have drinking water and the band were given small plastic water bottles to fill their personal bottles. You can plan sustainable options, but sometimes life happens!”

What’s next?
Guy is organising a tour in Ireland in the summer, with a no-fly policy. “We’re taking our stuff on the boat to England and driving across Ireland from there.”

The details 

Catalonia 2023
10/03/2023  Guy Salamon solo workshop @ ESEM Taller de Músics, Barcelona
10/03/2023  Guy Salamon Quintet @ Ultramar Club, L’Escala
11/03/2023  Guy Salamon Quintet @ La Jazz Cava, Vic
16/03/2023  Guy Salamon solo workshop young students @ Lleida
16/03/2023  Espai Orfeó, Lleida
17/03/2023  Jazz I Am, Barcelona
17/03/2023  Mozart, Calella
18/03/2023  Jamboree, Barcelona
19/03/2023  La Mar de Jazz, Cambrils


Case studies

North Sea String Quartet toured Sweden from 28 November through 4 December 2023. The Dutch quartet performed at 5 locations in the Knutpunkt network of venues, plus 2 jazz clubs in Gothenburg.
The tour consisted of 4 cities in 4 countries: Coutances (France), Leuven (Belgium), Cologne (Germany) and Nijmegen (the Netherlands) and was accompanied by Marja Mortensson's baby.
Budapest Music Centre's Opus Jazz Club organized an EJN Green Pilot tour in April 2023 in close cooperation with No Earplugs Booking Agency and the Norwegian band (Exit) KNARR.