Not many music festivals can boast of using the same site for more than half a century. But then, the Monterey Jazz Festival isn’t your typical event.
Celebrating its 53rd year of bringing jazz to the masses, the festival – presented by Verizon Sept. 17-19 at Monterey, Calif. Fairgrounds – announced its lineup this week, listing plenty of big names as well as artists that exemplify the diversity of the genre.
Headliners include Harry Connick Jr., Dianne Reeves, Freedom Band with Chick Corea, Kenny Garrett, Christian McBride and Roy Haynes, Ahmad Jamal and Angelique Kidjo.
Other artists and scheduled to appear include Le Boeuf Brothers, Gretchen Parlato, Dr. Lonnie Smith Trio, and The House Jacks. By the time the weekend has concluded 500 artists will have played the festival’s eight stages for three nights and two days of nonstop jazz.
Having Reeves on the lineup is even more noteworthy considering she’s the festival’s 2010 Artist-In-Residence, meaning she’ll perform throughout the weekend, as will Showcase Artist Haynes and Commission artist Billy Childs who will debut “Music For Two Quartets” with the Kronos Quartet.
Also worth mentioning is the appearance of jazz piano man Les McCann with the Javon Jackson Band in a segment listed as “Swiss Movement Revisited.” Swiss Movement was the title of the 1969 live album featuring McCann with saxophonist Eddie Harris recorded that year at the Montreux Jazz Festival. The album, which drew from a performance that was unrehearsed and spontaneous, resulted in the hit “Compared to What,” which at the time was considered to be a protest against the Vietnam war even though songwriter Eugene McDaniels penned the tune years earlier.
Not only are tickets on sale now, but this year’s Monterey Jazz Festival is giving you a multitude of choices, including full weekend arena packages, general admission ducats and new single day arena tickets. Just click here for more information.