A strong contingent of young musicians will make up a large part of the TD Toronto Jazz Festival According to full line-up unveiled recently. Now more than ever, young artists are in prominent positions taking jazz, and thus music itself, in a new direction. This line-up, together with the Festival’s commitment to enhance educational programming, allows the Festival to help push music forward and foster the next generation of great musicians.
Artists such as Hiromi, Joshua Redman, The Bad Plus, Saidah Baba Talibah, Gretchen Parlato and Janelle Monae will be featured on the Toronto Star Stage inside the Mainstage Marquee at Nathan Phillips Square, joining previously announced young artists such as bassist Esperanza Spalding, Trombone Shorty and acclaimed guitarist Derek Trucks (of Tedeschi Trucks Band).
Escape from the winter doldrums and start preparing for summer as the TD Toronto Jazz Festival unveils some of the artists who will be heating things up when the Festival runs from June 22 – July 1, 2012.
“We’re excited to announce the first wave of stars performing at the 26th annual TD Toronto Jazz Festival,” states Executive Producer, Patrick Taylor. “From multiple Grammy Award winners to artists from around the world, there will be music to satisfy every musical taste. We look forward to launching summer in the city, with more than 40 locations showcasing over 1,500 of the most gifted musicians.”
Tickets are on sale now through Ticketmaster – online or by calling 1.855.985.5000; Rotate This – 801 Queen Street West; Soundscapes – 572 College Street
Esperanza Spalding – Thursday, June 28, Mainstage Marquee, Nathan Phillips Square
Grammy winner for Best New Artist and one of the biggest breakout stars in 2011, Esperanza Spalding’s latest release, Radio Music Society (available March 20) is a follow-up to her critically acclaimed CD, Chamber Music Society. Intended as an application of jazz sensibility to pop ideas, this release explores the power of song and expands on the notion of “radio music.” All ticket purchasers for this show will receive a free exclusive single download from Esperanza’s upcoming album, Radio Music Society. Purchase tickets online.
Trombone Shorty – Wednesday, June 27, Mainstage Marquee, Nathan Phillips Square
Hailing from the Tremé neighbourhood in New Orleans’ 6th Ward, Trombone Shorty is back by popular demand after a sold out show this past November! Expanding on the musical heritage of New Orleans with his unique brand of supafunkrock – a mash-up of jazz, funk and soul, laced with hard-rock power chords and hip-hop beats – Trombone Shorty will be one to watch in the years to come. To purchase tickets online.
George Benson – Tuesday, June 26, Mainstage Marquee, Nathan Phillips Square
Simply one of the greatest guitarists in jazz history, George Benson can play in just about any style – from swing to bop to R&B to pop – and is equally impressive as a vocalist with great emotional range and sophistication. Self described as a “singer of songs, a spinner of tales,” he is an entertainer, a legend . . . the complete package. To purchase tickets online.
Frisell Plays Lennon – Tuesday, June 26, Enwave Theatre, Harbourfront Centre
Guitar virtuoso Bill Frisell has defied categorization over the years, lending credence to his versatility as a musician and innovator. Able to seamlessly travel back and forth between genres, Frisell is often regarded as one of the most sought after guitar voices. Playing the music of John Lennon, Frisell will be joined by Greg Leisz, Tony Scherr, and Kenny Wollesen. Purchase tickets online.
Mike Stern Band – Sunday, June 24, Horseshoe Tavern
A perennial Festival favourite, six-time Grammy nominee Mike Stern is one of the most prolific guitarists of his generation with a career that spans over three decades. Blending rock, blues, soul, and jazz, this is one live show that cannot be missed! Purchase tickets online.
Tedeschi Trucks Band – Friday, June 29, Mainstage Marquee, Nathan Phillips Square
After many years building separate, successful solo careers, this husband-and-wife duo are joining forces. Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi will bring their own unique blend of southern soul, American roots music mixed with some authentic rock-n-roll, and a touch of Florida swamp magic. Purchase tickets online.
Ziggy Marley – Wednesday, June 27, Phoenix Concert Theatre
Continuing where his father, the legendary Bob Marley, left off, Ziggy Marley has successfully carried on the tradition of communicating the music’s message to a growing global audience. Purchase tickets online.
The Robert Glasper Experiment featuring Bilal – Monday, June 25, Enwave Theatre, Harbourfront Centre
Very few musicians are able to deftly straddle the line between jazz and hip-hop, yet Robert Glasper is one of those rare wunderkinds. His latest project, Black Radio, features some of the biggest names in urban music (Erykah Badu, Bilal, Musiq Soulchild, Lupe Fiasco, yasiin bay [Mos Def] and more). It boldly stakes out new musical territory and transcends any notion of genre, drawing from jazz, hip hop, R&B, and rock. That is the eclecticism and essence of the Experiment. Purchase tickets online.
Destroyer – Saturday, June 23, Opera House
Perhaps better known for his collaborations with The New Pornographers, for more than 15 years Dan Bejar has also been at the helm of Destroyer, a Vancouver-based indie rock band. Widely known for challenging and often cryptic lyrics and unorthodox vocals, Bejar brings with each release a new twist on his cerebral yet very tuneful art pop. Purchase tickets online.
Soul Rebels – Tuesday, June 26, Opera House
Regarded by The Village Voice as “the missing link between Public Enemy and Louis Armstrong,” the Soul Rebels combine top-notch musicianship and songs with grooves that celebrate life in time-honoured New Orleans style. Purchase tickets online.
*Concert seating will be provided for all Mainstage Marquee performances at Nathan Phillips Square.
The TD Toronto Jazz Festival has presented some of the biggest names in jazz. When the Festival kicks off this summer from June 22 to July 1, 2012, more than 500,000 music lovers will be entertained as 1, 500 musicians take over the city performing 350+ concerts in just 10 days. From the young lions to the legends to undiscovered gems, the Festival is yours to discover. Let the music be your playground this summer.
For more information visit www.torontojazz.com