Now in its 16th year, The Great Connecticut Jazz Fest 2002 will unite 15 bands from four continents playing Dixieland to Swing in a three-day weekend of continuous performances on the Guilford Fair Grounds, Exit 59 off Interstate 95 in Guilford, Connecticut. The festival starts at 6:00 p.m. on July 26 and concludes with a finale jam sessions at 5:30 p.m. on July 28.
Proceeds from the Festival support the JazzFest's "Horns For Kids" music outreach programs, which provide scholarship aid, musical instruments and private instruction to disadvantaged youth in Connecticut, as well as funding for school-based youth jazz ensembles. Those young musicians perform each year at the JazzFest alongside their mentors and "coaches", who are all professional jazz artists.
Festival organizers have brought back favorite international bands from past years, including: The New Wolverines Jazz Orchestra from Australia, saluting great artists from Biederbecke to Armstrong; Argentina's Fenix Jazz Band, playing a unique style of traditional jazz, accented by Latin rhythms; Paris Washboard from Cergy, France, featuring one of Europe's finest 'stride' piano players, as well as a remarkable jazz drummer performing on an inventive washboard/percussion mix; and Connecticut's own Eight To The Bar, hailed by critics for its sophisticated arrangements of swing, boogie woogie and jump blues.
Other bands from throughout the United States include: Igor's Jazz Cowboys from Tempe, Arizona; The Midiri Brothers from Mays Landing, New Jersey; Titan Hot Seven from Mufreesboro, Tennessee; Stan Mark's Sin Sity Suitz from Las Vegas, Nevada; Bill Allred's Classic Jazz Band from Orlando, Florida and the Connecticut Festival All Stars from the East Coast.
Connecticut bands who will perform at the JazzFest are: The Bearcats Jazz Band from Danbury; Ross Tucker's Hot Cats from Wethersfield; The Easton Banjo Society from Easton; The Hartford Jazz Orchestra and the "hosts", The Galvanized Jazz Band from Guilford.
Along with continuous music, the Festival has also scheduled special events, including swing dance parties, midnight jam sessions, a Sunday morning Gospel service and an antique car parade. Food and beverages are available in an on-site food court.
For Festival passes or travel packages and overnight accommodations, visit The Great Connecticut Jazz Festival website.