Written by Parisa Eshrati
Gem & Jam is a three day music and arts festival that takes place at the Pima County Fairgrounds in Tucson, AZ. Read more about the fest here, and check out our playlist featuring the eclectic lineup of electronic, funk and jam bands.
The 13th annual Gem and Jam, held on January 31st - February 2nd in Tucson, AZ, serves as one of the best events to start off the new year in the old pueblo. The festival hosts both internationally and nationally acclaimed artists in the jam, funk and electronic music scenes, but is far more than just a music festival. Gem and Jam is a host to high-end art galleries and installations, visual performers, dancers, and community workshops.
The fest also acts as a kick-off celebration to the world-renowned Tucson Gem, Mineral and Fossil Showcase, which brings thousands of gem collectors and tourists from around the globe. The pairing combines a unique atmosphere that celebrates the Gem and Mineral community along with high-quality entertainment and arts.
The vision for Gem and Jam also ensures that the festival is executed as sustainably and resourcefully as possible. Their vision states:
“We want Gem & Jam to be a role model in the event industry by considering the impacts and issues associated with our event and working to minimize them where possible. Gem & Jam aims to be a positive example of conscious business practices and take advantage of the opportunity to transfer these principles to our staff, attendees and greater AZ community.”
The organizers ensure this vision by partnering with local businesses to uphold sustainability, economic, and cultural values. Local partners from the University of Arizona, Compost Cats, will organize compost stations to reduce waste, while the fest also bans waste products like single-use water bottles. All vendors will also be held to fairtrade and labor standards to implement ethical business standards.
All this aside, the diverse musical lineup will serve as the main attraction for attendees. This year features massive headliners such as the legendary UK breakbeat composer Tipper, and TH3, a collaborative project between members of The String Cheese Incident and The Floozies. Though the main acts are sure to draw attention, check out our playlist the covers all the other incredible artists that shouldn’t be missed: