All that jazz! The annual Charlie Parker Jazz Festival begins this weekend, honoring the legendary music pioneer with a ten days of FREE concerts, films about jazz and more, in NYC parks and other locations including the National Jazz Museum in Harlem.
Concerts include both contemporaries of Charlie Parker and young jazz musicians from the USA, Africa and the Caribbean continuing the art form he helped make so popular around the world.
As always, the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival is part of the annual SummerStage series of FREE concerts and dance performances throughout NYC parks.
The Charlie Parker Jazz Festival 2019 starts Friday, August 23 through Sunday, August 31st, with both afternoon and evening events.
In the world of modern music, few figures loom as large or cast as long a shadow as saxophonist Charlie “Bird” Parker, who is celebrated as a bebop pioneer and for bringing jazz into the modern era.
The annual festival celebrates him and his work.
With more than a dozen concerts and events over a week, we can’t list them all, but you can find blurbs about each on the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival website, along with some great music tracks to inspire you.
FREE reservations are recommended for some of the more popular events, to manage space.
Charlie Parker Jazz Festival Opening day:
Harlem 100, a multi-media show, created in collaboration with The National Jazz Museum in Harlem, celebrating the landmark 100th anniversary of the Harlem Renaissance.
This celebration features an all-star cast of modern jazz musicians, including
Mwenso and the Shakes, a multicultural New York jazz group laced with minimal irony and maximum fun led by the Sierra Leone-born Mwenso Brianna Thomas, a jazz vocalist with massive range who sings ballad standards, cabaret, Scat, and the blues, specializing in the 30s-style swing music;
Vuyo Sotashe, an ascendant young South African jazz vocalist making a name for himself in the New York jazz scene and the very special guest Fred Wesley;
Winard Harper & his group Jeli Posse, presented by Jazzmobile, play jazz standards and original works rooted in Caribbean rhythms and the traditions of Africa.
Visit the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival website for additional information, including specifics on each event, and some great music tracks to inspire you.
Find more things to inspire you in NYC in my new guidebook, 100 Things to Do in NYC Before You Die.
It includes a page of where to hear the best jazz in New York City.
Available online and in bookstores.