The festival lays out 150 performances at more than 15 venues all over New York City. A fair amount of those are rare performances by artists, like Franklin, who don’t get around much anymore or who haven’t really jammed together like they should — hello, Bobby McFerrin & Questlove!
“This year’s festival puts a prime focus on distinctive collaborations,” said Steven Bensusan, president of Blue Note Entertainment Group. “Shows such as Bobby McFerrin teaming up with Questlove and André Previn working with Christian McBride are rare opportunities for fans to hear world-class artists perform together in unique musical settings.”
Blue Note Entertainment Group’s casting this party, but it’s not reserved only for the jazz elite. “We also continue to emphasize styles that are more broadly connected to jazz, to include everything from R&B, soul, and hip-hop to reggae, rock and Americana,” Bensusan said.
The mix definitely strays. Michael Bolton’s not jazz. Neither’s Ruben Studdard — performing with Grammy-winning-vocalist Lalah Hathaway — or Ramsey Lewis with Earth, Wind & Fire’s Philip Bailey. But who cares?
Look at this line-up!