AFAR Magazine Feature

by Jacob on October 26, 2012

AFAR magazine, a hip alternative to stodgy, upscale travel magazines, features an interview with yours truly in their current issue. Every issue AFAR profiles “a modern nomad, defined as someone who travels internationally (for long periods or non-stop) because of his or her job, lifestyle, or life situation. Nomads are exceptional people at the top of their fields (they often have name recognition, but not necessarily celebrity status). They must travel at least four to six months out of the year.” I’m honored to have been included!

You can read the AFAR article online here as well as a second piece featuring my the world’s top five live music venues.

AFAR is a multi-platform travel media brand that inspires and guides those who travel the world to connect with its people, experience their cultures, and understand their perspectives. Its platforms include the award-winning AFAR magazine;, recently named a Top 10 site That Makes Travel Easier; the non profit foundation Learning AFAR; and immersive travel series AFAR Experiences.

In addition to the locations featured in the article, I provided a list of my favorite global music festivals, but they just didn’t have the space to fit them in. So here they are:


Jacob Edgar’s Favorite Music Festivals:

Antiliaanse Fest, Hoogstraten, Belgium
Founded by a Belgian farmer who fell in love with Caribbean music, Antiliaanse Fest brings some of the biggest stars from Latin America, Africa and the Antilles to a farm in bumf*** Belgium. One of my favorite things about this festival is how many immigrants from across Europe travel here to enjoy their favorite acts from home – there’s nothing better then watching a band with a crowd that sings along to every word while waving their homeland’s flag high and proud.

Sakifo Festival, Reunion Island
Tell most people (unless they are French) you are going to Reunion Island and usually you will be greeted with a look of stupefaction. Its worth the 11-hour flight from Paris to visit this volcanic-island paradise in the Indian Ocean, especially if your trip is timed to coincide with the marvelous Sakifo Festival. Top international stars bring in the crowds of 30,000 plus, but the highlight for me was the local accordion-driven, percussion-heavy creole music.

Festival International de Louisiane, Lafayette, Louisiana
Even your mother has heard of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, but the select few know that at the same time in late April, just 2 hours west of New Orleans in the heart of Cajun country, can be found one of the best world music festivals in the United States. Originally created as a celebration of Francophone culture worldwide, Festival International presents great artists from the four corners of the globe on cozy outdoor stages in downtown Lafayette. And did I mention it’s free!?

Globalfest, New York, NY
Every January, the multi-floored venue Webster Hall is packed with global music fans out to hear the newest sounds in world music. Timed to correspond with a performing arts industry conference, you can join the professionals and preview the sounds that will be gracing stages across the US and Canada in years to come. The music marathon lasts from 7pm to after midnight and features overlapping shows by over 14 different acts, many performing in the US for the first time.

Phaza Morgana, Timna Park, Israel
Not really a music festival, more an artistic happening at an isolated rock outcropping in Israel’s Negev Desert called Solomon’s Pillars, this bi-annual event is worth attending for the setting and ambiance alone. Last September I sat in the stands of a 5000-seat mobile amphitheater that was assembled in one of the most striking environments imaginable, enjoying a magnificent concert by the popular Idan Raichel Project. With elaborate light shows and videos being projected on the rocks behind the stage it was truly a unique and magical experience.

Rajasthan International Folk Festival, Jodphur, India
Every October the Merhangarh Fort, the impressive former castle of the Maharaja of Jodphur, comes alive with the sounds of Rajasthani folk music and select international performers. Perched on a hill overlooking the blue city of Jodphur, the setting will take your breath away, and the music, which is an ancient relative of European Gypsy music, will transport you to another world…oh wait, you are already there!


And here are a few other things they left out:

Andres Carne de Res, Chia, Colombia
Hands down the greatest restaurant in the world…not necessarily for the food, which is meat-heavy and inspired by Colombia’s traditional cuisine, but for the atmosphere and experience. A sprawling complex that seats over 2000 people, the restaurant is covered from floor to ceiling with hand-crafted folk art. The attention to detail is amazing, even the silverware is made on site at the backyard blacksmith, and there’s a phenomenal kids area where children can act in plays make their own food and free their parents up to enjoy the roving minstrels, world music DJs and killer cocktails. Worth a flight to Colombia on its own.

Cabaret Sauvage, Paris, France
A beautiful performance space with elegant woodwork and vintage atmosphere, Cabaret Sauvage seems like it would have been a fixture in the 19th century Paris nightclub scene, yet the club can be totally dismantled and moved to a different location like a circus tent. Most of the year it is settled at Park de La Villette on the edge of Paris, and a show by any of the top local and international artists that perform there is always a night to remember.


{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

traditional music festival india October 31, 2012 at 5:34 AM

Caribbean music is one of my favourite music. thanku for the list of these festivals. now i can enjoy these festival whenever i travel. thanks alot


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