In the western regions of Germany you may come across some awe-inspiring symbols of early industrialism. For me, a child of the more idyllic Black Forest, the sight of the Zeche Zollverein in Essen is quite simply breathtaking. And it is here, at this industrial monument, that the first and very well attended JazzNacht took place – which has proved to be a perfect choice by the organisers. When Jeff Cascaro, a child of the Ruhr Area himself, took the stage and raised his soul voice there was a sense of “Ruhrpott”-Blues in the air, for here in the “Pott” (as the locals simply call it) people take pride in being honest, hard-working and straight up in their self-confidence. May this festival thrive and prosper for many a decade, while reminding people of an important chapter in our industrial history. It is quite wonderful to see how art and culture take possession of these historical places, shape them and give them new meaning.