Outdoor Stage Lineup Announced for Tri-C JazzFest
Fourteen bands selected to perform June 24-25 at Playhouse Square
Nearly 24 hours of live music showcasing the best of Northeast Ohio will take place at this summer's hottest downtown music festival — the 43rd annual Tri-C JazzFest Cleveland, presented by KeyBank.
Fourteen exciting and varied acts promise to keep the music pumping from the Strassman Insurance Stage on Euclid Avenue at East 14th Street. The free outdoor performances run 3 p.m. to midnight June 24 and 25 when Tri-C JazzFest overtakes Playhouse Square.
A jury of music industry professionals vetted nearly a hundred bands while putting together the lineup. The chosen bands represent a variety of genres, including jazz, funk, blues, reggae and pop.
"We're really excited to be back on the plaza at Playhouse Square," said Terri Pontremoli, director of
Tri-C JazzFest. "And this year, the addition of a next-generation stage highlights young people and the jazz continuum in Cleveland."
Look for the following acts, listed by day of performance. A full schedule with performance times will be posted at tri-cjazzfest.com closer to the event. Schedule subject to change.
Friday, June 24
- Alla Boara: The group seeks to bring recognition and new life to Italy's diverse history of regional folk music. Their modern arrangements of near-extinct folk songs are variously surprising, playful, mournful, tender and bewitching.
- Ernie Krivda and the Fat Tuesday Big Band: Ernie Krivda is one of Cleveland's most accomplished, awarded and well-known jazz artists. The 19-piece group and its legendary frontman have a well-earned reputation as one of the region's hardest-swinging big bands.
- PK Jones Quartet: Pianist, drummer, organist and Cleveland native Phillip Jones is one of many talented musicians who built a career based on foundational training received at Tri-C.
- Cats On Holiday: This swamp pop band led by Denis DeVito has been pleasing audiences for 25 years with a blend of Louisiana-inspired rock/roots/Zydeco.
- A Tribute to Eddie Baccus Sr.: A performance celebrating the life of Eddie Baccus Sr., who passed away this year. A virtuoso on the Hammond B-3, Baccus Sr. was a bedrock of the Cleveland jazz scene. His influence on fans and musicians alike has been invaluable.
- Walter Barnes Jr. & Friends: Bassist Walter Barnes Jr. has recorded and performed with acts such as Yolanda Adams, The O'Jays and Kim Burrell while straddling the worlds of gospel and soul. He currently plays with Toni Braxton and Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds.
- Carlos Jones & the P.L.U.S. Band: Jones and his eight-piece band deliver authentic roots reggae with occasional turns into lighthearted soca and calypso numbers.
Saturday, June 25
- JazzWorks: The brainchild of former Tri-C JazzFest artistic director Willard Jenkins, JazzWorks is an all-star octet playing classic jazz. The group includes Howie Smith, John Klayman, Aidan Plank, Joey Skotche, Daniel Spearman, Bob Ferrazza, Chris Anderson and Reggie Jackson.
- Chris Coles' GLEAM: Saxophonist Chris Coles' GLEAM is an all-star ensemble featuring Theron Brown, Zaire Darden, Tommy Lehman, Jamey Haddad, Jordan McBride, Floco Torres and Orlando Watson.
- Rachel Brown & The Beatnik Playboys: Vocalist Rachel Brown and the group consistently wow audiences with powerful imagery and strong musical stylings.
- East Central Jazz Educators All-Star Big Band (Madd for Tadd): Tadd Dameron tribute ensemble comprised of top jazz musicians and educators representing various institutions across Ohio.
- Herb Wilborn Jr. Band: This six-piece contemporary/smooth jazz group conjures comparisons to artists such as Dave Koz, David Sanborn and Najee.
- The Dr. Dave Thomas Project: Dave Thomas is a talented piano and organ player. A native of Youngstown, Ohio, Thomas was an original member of the R&B group Sweet Thunder. He has performed with artists including the late James Cleveland, Dizzy Gillespie and Albert Ayler.
- Sammy DeLeon y su Orquesta: Percussionist Sammy DeLeon — recipient of the 2016 Cleveland Jazz Legends Award — has performed with some of the world's greatest Latin musicians and always rocks the stage.
The free performances on the outdoor main stage are made possible with support from the George Gund Foundation and Strassman Insurance Services.
In addition to the main stage, the William M. Weiss Foundation Next Gen Stage, located on the U.S. Bank Plaza, will feature current and former Tri-C JazzFest Academy students. The schedule will be released in June.
Other free outdoor activities at the festival include the U.S. Bank Kids Club; Jazz Kitchen with cooking demonstrations and artist interviews; food trucks and vendors; strolling musicians and street performers; games; and shopping.
JazzFest also features nine ticketed concerts at Music Hall at Public Auditorium and in Playhouse Square's historic theaters. Headliners include Anthony Hamilton, Brian Culbertson, Eddie Palmieri, John Clayton with special guest John Pizzarelli and more.
Tri-C JazzFest Cleveland is made possible by Cuyahoga Community College, KeyBank, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Ohio Arts Council, the George Gund Foundation and a growing list of donors and vendors.
May 23, 2022