Quincy Jones Special Feature: Going Global

Dubai Music Week is Jones' latest venture in a long history of international outreach

In 1956, Quincy Jones gained some of the most valuable experience of his burgeoning career by touring the Middle East and North Africa as a trumpet player, arranger and music director for Dizzy Gillespie's State Department-sponsored big band.

Fifty-seven years later, Jones is giving back to the region with the launch of Dubai Music Week, a joint initiative between the Dubai World Trade Center (DWTC) and the Global Gumbo Group (G3), founded by Jones and United Arab Emirates entrepreneur Badr Jafar.

The conference will allow music companies and merchants to showcase their artists and products, and also launch new initiatives.

Jafar said in a joint statement with Jones, "I strongly believe in the social powers of arts and entertainment, and so I am constantly looking to see how best to use these spheres to create positive social impact. We both believe this collaboration with DWTC will provide a cultural exchange between our region and the rest of the world, using music's amazing power to foster a better understanding and an appreciation for our common values."

Two music festivals are also in the works from DWTC and G3--Dubai Rocks and Dubai Classics, which will feature international and regional artists. Dates for Dubai Music Week and the festivals have yet to be announced.

Also on the international front, Jones will produce and appear at the World Peace Concert on Aug. 3 at the Hiroshima Green Arena in downtown Hiroshima, Japan. In his first visit to the city, Jones will bring his stable of artists and will also be involved in the staging, direction and selection of artists set to appear at the concert.