OFF-Fest was established in 2002 as a second festival, which arose from an event of a long-established tradition: Skopje Jazz Festival (34 years).The main idea was to fill the gap outside the jazz festival and to create another important music event in a different period of the year, and in terms of music genres, wide-oriented. It was a natural decision to start OFF-Fest festival in a decade of full globalization and fast growing creativity, as well as raising awareness of the so-called "world music". OFF-Fest presents a variety of music from all continents, focusing on different categories of world music: traditional, ethno, folk, roots, to urban, as well as contemporary and experimental music styles. A lot of renowned artist from all over the world performed throughout OFF-Fest's history.

The 15th edition of OFF-Fest will take place from 27th to 30th May 2016 with a line-up including the pioneer of “French Touch” St Germain, acclaimed American poet and rapper Saul Williams, highlife legend Pat Thomas & Kwashibu Area Band, Portuguese global dance scene heros Batida, passionate Italians Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino, charming Czech violinist and singer Iva Bittova and Brazilian virtuoso guitar player Badi Assad.

OFF-Fest is a member of European Forum of Worldwide Music Festivals.