As time goes by
“People want to see us, because our faces reflect the good old days,” says a member of the Peace Hotel Jazz Band. Hailing from Shanghai, the band is the oldest of its kind in the world, and the band members – ranging in age from 65 to 93 – all have their own story. Now they’re being invited to perform at the North Sea Jazz Festival in the Netherlands. The gig will be the highlight of their careers, but they seem to take it in stride. They do enlist young female singer Jasmine for the occasion, and shamelessly flirt with her.
At a leisurely pace and without any voiceover interruption, we watch as they prepare for their trip to Europe and the performance. In between, the musicians talk about their lives in China during the Japanese occupation, the nationalists, the Americans and the Cultural Revolution. Their passion for music has protected them from the ravages of time, but it has also left its mark on them. And these old fellows aren’t the least bit interested in making the switch to today’s generation. They’re respectable gentlemen, professional musicians – the kind of guys you can’t help but hold dear to your heart.