Thursday, July 24, 2014

New Cambridge Jazz Festival Launches in Massachusetts on July 27

Grammy winners, local artists and jazz legends are all slated to perform at the first annual Cambridge Jazz Festival, taking place on Sunday, July 27 at the University Park Commons on Sydney Street outside of Harvard Square.

Jazz drummer and Grammy Award winner Terri Lyne Carrington and Motown legend Valerie Simpson are headlining the stage, along with jazz pianist George W. Russell Jr. and his trio, vocalist Dominique Eade, jazz drummer Ron Savage and his trio and Fernando Brandao and  the Berklee Brazilian All Stars.  Here is the complete schedule, and bios of the artists.  

The festival, which is free and open to the public, is being organized by Larry Ward, a former Cambridge City Councilor, and jazz musician Ron Savage, with help from numerous supporters, including City Manager Rich Rossi and Deena Anderson of Harvard’s Arts First program.
Ward, who describes himself as “a jazz lover for years and years,” came up with the idea after running a club and bringing in jazz acts near Central Square.  He met up with jazz drummer Ron Savage to discuss the idea, and “he and I had the same vision – it was uncanny – of what could possibly be.
An important perspective of the festival organizers, Ward says, is “the constant need to bridge younger musicians with some of the more established musicians. “ 

In addition to the music, the festival also has also organized a Taste of Cambridge selection of food trucks and local vendors supplying a diverse selection of foods.  

The Cambridge Jazz Festival also marks the launch of the Johnny Hodges Fund, a new initiative to support college scholarships and music education for Cambridge students, while celebrating the late Hodges (1906-1970), a Cambridge native who is considered one of the great saxophonists in jazz.

Here is a schedule of jazz festivals inMassachusetts this year.


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