BOSTON (April 18, 2016) – Jazz Week, the annual celebration of Boston’s thriving jazz scene, its role as a world center of jazz education and birthplace of jazz legends, launches its 10th edition on Friday, April 22.
Jazz Week ‘16 – organized and coordinated by JazzBoston (www.jazzboston.org) for the past ten years – will run through Sunday, May 1. More than 200 events are part of the 10-day festival, held in collaboration with artists, organizations and venues throughout the Greater Boston area.
New Jazz Traditions – this year’s theme – will highlight the many ways in which jazz has come to be celebrated in our community in the past decade, as well as introduce a few new ones.
As in past years, Jazz Week ’16 ties in with the Smithsonian Institution’s observance of April as Jazz Appreciation Month and – since 2012 – with the UNESCO-sponsored International Jazz Day on April 30.
Among the many highlights of Jazz Week ’16:
- Boston Jazz Hero Award: Saturday, April 23, 30-6 p.m. Wally’s Café, 427 Massachusetts Ave. JazzBoston will again co-host a party with the Wally’s Café family to honor the recipients of the Jazz Journalists Association’s (JJA) annual Boston Jazz Hero award. Jazz radio host Eric Jackson will present the awards to this year’s recipients – Syd Smart and Leonard Brown – for founding the John Coltrane Memorial Concert (JCMC) and stewarding it for 39 years. Stan Strickland, a longtime JCMC participant, will lead the band. The event is free and open to the public.
- Makanda Jazz Dance Party: Saturday, April 23, 8-11 p.m. Hibernian Hall, 184 Dudley St., Roxbury. The dance party, back this year after its major inaugural success in 2015, is a celebration of jazz in Roxbury’s past, present and future. Music by the Makanda Project, whose arrangements of the compositions of Roxbury native Makanda Ken McIntyre and performances at the Dudley Library have made it the neighborhood’s resident orchestra. Free and open to the public.
- Jazz at City Hall: Wednesday, April 27, 11a.m.-12:30 p.m., Boston City Hall. JazzBoston returns to City Hall for the third straight year to preview International Jazz Day (April 30) with a midday concert. Ken Field’s Revolutionary Snake Ensemble with guest Arni Cheatham will bring music based on New Orleans’ second line street band tradition to the City Hall mezzanine at 11 a.m., then fill the City Council chamber with jazz when the Councilors convene at noon. Both performances are free and open to the public.
- Jason Palmer Listening Party: Thursday, April 28, 6-8 p.m. Pastoral Restaurant, 345 Congress St., Fort Point. JazzBoston’s first listening party will feature Boston trumpeter Jason Palmer, internationally recognized as a major voice in contemporary jazz. Jason will play recordings from a variety of Boston-affiliated jazz musicians, and will offer commentary and lead discussion in an informal setting. Open to the public, all ages. Dinner and drinks will be available for purchase. No cover charge.
- Musical Tribute to Three Boston Jazz Giants and launch of the Boston Jazz Heritage Trail: Friday, April 29, 6:30-9 p.m. at the Museum of African American History, 46 Joy St., Beacon Hill (www.maah.org). Singer Mae Arnette, composer and pianist Ran Blake, and drummer Roy Haynes are three of Boston’s living jazz legends. The campaign to create a Boston Jazz Heritage Trail will be announced. Jazz radio host Eric Jackson and Yoron Israel and High Standards with special guests will join in the celebration, co-hosted by JazzBoston and the MAAH.
- International Jazz Day Pop-Up concerts: Saturday, April 30, various times at various sites in Boston. New England Conservatory student ensembles will do the honors.
- Good Music = Good Health Jazz Fair: Saturday, April 30, 1-4 p.m., Roxbury Tenants of Harvard, 11 New Whitney St., Boston. On International Jazz Day, the Lung Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, JazzBoston, and Roxbury Tenants of Harvard present the Good Music = Good Health Jazz Fair at the RTH Outdoor Plaza, an all-ages, multilingual event to raise awareness of the importance of lung health and the joy of making music with neighbors. Three of Boston’s most talented educators/performers – Stan Strickland, Arni Cheatham and Jason Palmer – will teach participants basic techniques for blowing a horn or jazzing up a song, then lead them in collective music-making using a variety of small wind instruments. Other activities, interspersed with BWH’s health and wellness booths, include an instrument petting zoo, tests and contests of lung power with great prizes, and a jam session finale.
- Mattapan Speaks Jazz: Sunday, May 1, 3-6 p.m., William E. Carter American Legion Post, 1531 Blue Hill Ave., Mattapan. Another community celebration back again this year after a successful first event in 2015. Frank Wilkins and his WeJazzUp band will headline other Mattapan musicians and guest artists.
- Boston Creative Jazz Scene: Sunday, May 1, 7-9 p.m., Piano Factory Gallery, 793 Tremont St., Boston. A celebration of the compilation recording and historical essay “The Boston Creative Jazz Scene 1970-1983.” Musicians on these rare recordings – Arni Cheatham, Peter Bloom, Mark Harvey and Leonard Brown – will join with later generations of improvisers for live music and discussion. Free, donations accepted.
- JazzBoston-sponsored House Concerts: throughout Jazz Week ’16. These bring jazz performances to private residences in neighborhoods in and around the city. JazzBoston matches small ensembles with individuals who would like to host a concert for friends and neighbors.
Updates on these and many other Jazz Week 2015 events, along with listings of performances at some of the more than 140 jazz venues in and around the city, may be found at www.jazzboston.org. The Jazz Week 2015 brochure also will be available at sites throughout the city, including visitors centers and hotels.
JazzBoston thanks these organizations for their support of Jazz Week 2016: State Street Corporation, Berklee College of Music, New England Conservatory, Office for the Arts at Harvard, the Ethelbert Cooper Gallery, Regattabar Jazz Club, Scullers Jazz Club, ArtWeek Boston, and Moonbox Productions.
JazzBoston (www.jazzboston.org) is the umbrella and advocacy organization for Greater Boston’s jazz community. We connect, support, and promote the entire Greater Boston jazz scene.
For more information
Harry King firstname.lastname@example.org and 617-733-3096.