By early August, I’ve usually had enough of Sacramento’s heat, and I’m ready for a weekend escape to a cooler climate. The San Jose Jazz Summer Fest (Aug. 8 – 10) offers cooler temperatures combined with hot salsa and improvised solos.
Ever since its grassroots beginning in 1990, San Jose Jazz Summer Fest has grown from a one stage concert to an eleven stage presence, celebrating jazz and related genres and embracing world-class artists.
The festival has always had a strong commitment to Latin jazz and salsa and this year the Poncho Sanchez Band pays tribute to famed percussionist Armando Peraza. A great percussionist from Cuba, Peraza spiced up bands led by George Shearing, Cal Tjader, and Carlos Santana. For his tribute set, Sanchez will feature guest artists John Santos, Pete Escovedo, and legendary studio musician Emil Richards. The salsa stage will also host the Pacific Mambo Orchestra, legendary trombonist Jimmy Bosch, percussionist Pedrito Martinez, and multi instrumentalist Johnny Polanco.
Monty Alexander & The Harlem-Kingston Express will headline the festival on Sunday with a set that bridges the gap between American jazz and the music of his native Jamaica. Also appearing on Sunday is Catherine Russell. Cat’s latest CD, Bring It Back, earned a rare five stars review in Down Beat Magazine. She comes from musical royalty. Her father was Louis Armstrong’s music director and her mother was a pioneering musician with the legendary Sweethearts of Rhythm. Catherine’s music is deeply rooted in blues and she sings from the heart.
This year, Jazzweek.com, a prominent industry website, hosts its annual JazzWeek Summit to coincide with the festival. Looks like promoters, broadcasters, agents, journalists, musicians, and agents from all over the country will be on hand to savor San Jose’s world class festival.
We want to give you a chance to enjoy a little of the fun with a single-day ticket giveaway.