Janus Jazz Aspen Snowmass, which returns to Aspen proper after a 10-year residence in neighboring Snowmass Valley, announced the final line-up for its June 19 - 22 festival, scheduled at Rio Grande Park in Aspen.
On Thursday, June 19 at 8:30 PM, the sounds of Cuba will fill the air as the world-renowned Chico O'Farrill Afro-Cuban Jazz Band, now under the leadership of Chico's son Arturo O'Farrill, perform. One of today's pre-eminent Afro-Cuban big bands noted for their sophisticated writing and unmistakable sound that is bold, brassy, tense yet elegant, the Chico O'Farrill Afro-Cuban Jazz Band was showcased last year in a tribute concert at Lincoln Center and are featured on Sundays at New York's famed Birdland. Patricia Barber, whom the Los Angeles Times critic Don Heckman calls, "The coolest singer/songwriter around," combines her late night cool and uncanny ability to stake new claims on contemporary pop tunes with her prowess for composing witty and gorgeous tunes of her own. She will lead her long-standing Chicago-based ensemble in a special late night show at the Hotel Jerome ballroom lounge.
On Friday, June 20, the magnificent voice of multiple Grammy-winning legend Tony Bennett and his trio are featured for an unforgettable evening of the classic American songbook. Topping the charts and winning over countless music fans since 1951, Bennett has sung the best available songs in a warm, husky tenor enduring him into the new century with continued vigor, through collaborations with artists such as kd Lang and Elvis Costello. Jazz pianist Brad Mehldau, a modern day maverick whose trio runs the gamut from Nick Drake to Radiohead, while distilling the harmonic constructions of Bill Evans will perform at the Hotel Jerome ballroom lounge.
On Saturday, June 21, Boz Scaggs makes his first ever JAS appearance in an evening mixing classic hits from his 1976 landmark Silk Degrees with new material. The opening act is still pending as of press time.
On Sunday, June 22, the brilliant young blues diva Shemekiah Copeland makes her first ever JAS mainstage appearance at 6:30pm. The daughter of famed blues master Johnny "Clyde" Copeland, Shemekiah is considered one of the keepers of the flame of traditional Mississippi blues. Closing the concert performance at 8:30pm will be the legendary Joe Cocker. Mixing blues, rock and R&B, Cocker gave one of JAS' truly memorable performances at its 10th anniversary Labor Day weekend festival.
States JAS founder James Horowitz, "The original vision for the festival was based on the Marciac model of our sister festival in Southwest France, a small village setting where everything is accessible on foot. The re-creation of Marciac's central square here in Aspen with free afternoon music adjacent to the park and just a short stroll to the big top tent at night for mainstage concerts, will add a charming element missing in recent years."
Free concerts are scheduled at a small stage to be erected at the Cooper Avenue Mall adjacent to Wagner Park on Thursday - Sunday afternoons featuring New Orleans trad-jazz trumpeter and vocalist Kermit Ruffins and the BBQ Swingers, plus the superb vocalist Tierney Sutton, and others tba. JAS In-Schools students from throughout Roaring Fork Valley public schools will perform early each day.
A full schedule of late night JAS After Dark club performances will be announced at a later date.
Tickets are currently on sale at the Wheeler Opera House, 970- 920 5770, or by calling the JAS Box Office at 1 866 JAS TIXX (527-8499). For Patron Tickets (formerly VIP) and general information, call the JAS Office at 970-920-4996 or visit the website.