"Jazz" typeface...

nert's picture

Hi all,

This is an odd one. I'm struggling on a suitable typeface to use on a jazz website (all types of jazz, not just a specific genre (dammit! I was looking for an excuse to use Device fonts Blackcurrant; and a 60s style jazz site would've been perfect) but everything from Eartha Kittt to Jamie Cullum.

Apparently it has to be "classy". Now classy I can do. Jazz I can do. Together?

Any quick suggestions - freeform or otherwise ;) - greatly appreciated.


hash's picture

Hi Simon

Clarendon has always been my favourite when working on jazz posters myself. Used with a sans serif...perfectly elegant.


eliason's picture

Did you see this thread? {Clarendon was the first suggestion out of the gate there, too.)

blank's picture

Why not just use a solid American-looking gothic? That way you’re getting a cultural connection and have a relatively neutral design that can be applied to all kinds of jazzy stuff.

David Rault's picture

Clarendon - Franklin Gothic - News Gothic - Gotham - Helvetica Neue Thin Extended.

The 2 first ones have been extensively tested and approved by Reid Miles on his designs for Blue Note records.


Isaac's picture

Can't go wrong with a Reid Miles tribute. A big fat Clarendon with Akzidenz Grotesk, or AG Bold Condensed with a lighter Clarendon, etc etc. That's already been said, I'm just chippin' in.

Isaac's picture

I should also mention that photography is important for that "look," but I don't know if your project is strictly type based or what.

nert's picture


Yes, also something I'm looking into - but primarily my concerns were firmly in the lap of type, which I *know* is usually the wrong way to go about things, but that's just the way I design. :)

We have accounts everywhere with stock sites, but everything is so generic and bland (with the exception of Morguefile; somewhere that constantly surprises me, being royalty free, and, well, free).

Clarendon looks like an ideal face, and something, possibly due to font "jamias-vu" (see it often, always forget it's there) I'd never have thought of.

Thanks so much for suggestions, I'll start experimenting when I hit the office tomorrow.


Nick Shinn's picture

You could use a typeface that has a "cultural" axis.
By that, I mean that instead of the usual axes such as weight, scale and slant, there are, for instance, historical variants.
Chalet, of course, represents several scenes.
Hypatia has options too, with old-style and geometric as variants on the same body.
Of my faces, Eunoia and Panoptica provide alternate vibes within the same general brand.

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