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Lineup News

2010 Festival Lineup Has Been Announced!

The 2010 lineup and ticket information has been announced! Details are available at http://jazzfest.louthompson.com/2010-lineup/.

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2010 Artist Profile

Ahmad Jamal

Pianist Ahmad Jamal will be performing at the 2010 festival on Saturday June 26th – six days before his 80th birthday!

Ahmad’s wikipedia entry calls him “an acclaimed virtuoso jazz pianist and keyboardist, composer, and innovative trio leader” and “one of Miles Davis’s favorite pianists.”

His Official Site includes a discography and list of tour dates.

In the past five years, Ahmad has released several albums, including:

  • 2010’s A Quiet Time with James Cammack on bass, Kenny Washington on drums, and Manolo Badrena on precussion.
  • 2008’s It’s Magic with James Cammack on bass, Idris Muhammad on drums, and Manolo Badrena on percussion.
  • 2005’s After Fajr with James Cammack on bass and Idris Muhammad on drums.
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More Jazz at SPAC This Spring

The Saratoga Performing Arts Center has announced the lineup for the 2010 Extended Season, an emerging artist showcase presented at the Spa Little Theatre in late Spring.

This year’s program will offer performances by acclaimed jazz bassist and 2009 Thelonious Monk Award winner Ben Williams on Saturday May 22, and jazz vocalist Sachal Vasandani on Thursday June 3.

Tickets for SPAC’s Extended Season performances are $25 each. Tickets can be ordered online.

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2010 Artist Profile

Rachel Z

Rachel Z, also known as Rachel Carmel Nicolazzo, has been playing the piano since the age of seven. Since then she’s played with giants of the 20th century jazz scene including Wayne Shorter, Stanley Clarke and Lenny White. In 2010 she will open the festival main stage on Sunday (June 27) with Omar Hakim on drums! Later in the day she will appear on the gazebo stage.

Her recent project, titled Dept. of Good and Evil, features drummer and husband Bobby Rae and bassist Maeve Royce. According to Rachel’s Wikipedia article the trio’s “ideas for transforming modern pop songs into jazz masterpieces … have thrust this group into the forefront of modern jazz.” Their self-titled 2007 release can be purchased from Amazon as a CD.

Additionally, her 2005 solo release, Grace can be purchased from Amazon as a CD.

Her Official Site includes a biography and discography.

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2010 Artist Profile

Taj Mahal

Taj Mahal will be performing at the 2010 festival on Saturday June 26th. This is Taj’s first performance ever at the Saratoga Jazz Festival!

Taj’s wikipedia entry calls him “an internationally recognized blues musician” and notes that he has won two Grammy Awards!

His Official Site includes a biography, discography, and list of tour dates.

His 2009 Release Maestro featuring guest appearances by Ben Harper, Jack Johnson, Ziggy Marley’s Band, Los Lobos, and others can be purchased as a CD or MP3 download.

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Lineup News

First 2010 Headliners Announced

2010 headliners will include legendary blues musician Taj Mahal.

Expect more artists to be announced in the coming weeks.

Until then, check out Taj Mahal in action!

Taj Mahal

Image from http://www.flickr.com/photos/aworan/
Image licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license (CC BY 2.0).

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2009 Attendence Tops 2008

With a strong artist lineup that included performances by Patti LaBelle, George Benson and Bettye LaVette, SPAC’s 2009 Freihofer’s Saratoga Jazz Festival had higher attendance than last year. The two-day festival attracted 12,027 guests, a one percent increase over last year.

“We are grateful that in these difficult economic times, attendance for the Freihofer’s Saratoga Jazz Festival increased over last year. It’s a result that underscores the strength of the program developed by our partner Danny Melnick, President of Absolutely Live Entertainment and it also suggests that people are prioritizing quality time and experiences with family and friends, perhaps now more than ever,” said Marcia J. White, SPAC’s President & Executive Director.

“It was wonderful to see colorful umbrellas and blankets spread from one end of our lawn to the other as people came together to enjoy a weekend of jazz and relaxation. They came with sumptuous picnics, cold drinks, games and books. They browsed at the fine arts and crafts fair, ate barbeque and strolled our stunning grounds in the Spa State Park. It was a weekend of great music, great fun and great memories – the quintessential SPAC experience,” she concluded.

Attendance For Freihofer’s Saratoga Jazz Festival Tops Last Year

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2010 Dates Announced

The 2010 Festival will take place on Saturday June 26th and Sunday June 27th, 2010.

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Lineup News

Set Times Announced

We’re less than five short days away from the 2009 Festival! To help you prepare for a wonderful weekend, the expected set times (PDF) have been announced.

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President and Executive Director of SPAC talks about the Festival

“In addition to world-class jazz, the Freihofer’s Jazz Festival is known and loved by jazz fans from across the Northeast for its idyllic setting. Our lush lawn, framed by the majestic pines of the Saratoga Spa State Park, is the perfect place to stretch out and relax. With FREE parking, the opportunity to bring in food and beverages, blankets and tents, our festival offers a welcoming, vibrant atmosphere that enhances the whole jazz experience,” said Marcia J. White, President and Executive Director of SPAC. “In addition we have affordable food for sale including our fabulous finger-licking barbeque, hamburgers, hot dogs and more, plus a full bar located in the beautiful Hall of Springs on site. Modern restroom facilities are also conveniently available.”