Tucson, AZ ---The countdown begins to the 10th season of “Jazz in January”, a joyous 9 days of live musical enjoyment presented by the HSL Properties Tucson Jazz Festival. From mainstage performances at venues like the Fox Tucson Theatre, the Rialto, Centennial Hall, Hotel Congress Plaza and Linda Ronstadt Hall, Intimate presentations at locations like 191 N Toole, Bahti Indian Arts and Tucson’s own jazz club The Century Room – host to fourteen shows over the course of the festival. Jam sessions at the Century Room where festival talents regularly show up and sit in late-night shows are not to be missed. A new addition this year is live jazz at many locally owned restaurants throughout Tucson with some offering jazz themed dishes and cocktails as well (https://tucsonjazzfestival.org/tucson-restaurants/).
This year’s theme “Join the Party” is in the spirit of a New Orleans celebration – each day unfolding with new delights, offering a broad variety of jazz styles, featuring the top jazz musicians in the world. Festival Executive Director Khris Dodge is excited about the depth of programming planned for this year. “Whether this is your first festival with us or your 10th, we invite you to be part of something special. You don’t have to be a lover or connoisseur of jazz to enjoy the festival. There is nothing greater than experiencing any music live, and jazz music will take you on an unexpected and delightful journey. Join us on that journey and I guarantee you will enjoy the ride.” For tickets and additional information visit https://tucsonjazzfestival.org/.
HSL PROPERTIES TUCSON JAZZ FESTIVAL SCHEDULE
CENTURY ROOM SHOWS
Jan 12, 6pm – TJF Opening Party featuring the Armen Donelian Quartet
Come celebrate the opening night of the Tucson Jazz Festival with a special cocktail hour with the Armen Donelian Quartet. Kick the festival off with live jazz and cocktails at the Century Room before crossing Congress to enjoy Arturo Sandoval at the Rialto Theater at 8pm. Doors open at 5pm with live music starting at 6pm.
Jan 12 – 10:30pm - Late-Night Jam with Arthur Vint Quartet
Drummer and composer and program director at the Century Room, Arthur Vint has been described as a ‘musical chameleon’ as he is able to shape-shift to meet the needs of any style of music and always does so with the right colors for the job. Equally adept at playing modern jazz, early jazz, big band, salsa, country, pop or rock, his drumming style is based around a strong sense of time and arrangement, leading the band from behind with creative grooves and textures.
Jan 13, 7pm – Isiah J Thompson Trio
Winner of the 2023 American Pianists Awards and the Cole Porter Fellowship in Jazz of the American Pianists Association is truly a rising star. He is a compelling composer and a powerhouse performer. The Juilliard graduate has performed with many major artists, recorded with Wynton Marsalis, is a Steinway Artist, has received the Lincoln Center Emerging Artist Award and took second place in the 2018 Thelonious Monk Competition in 2018.
Jan 14, 7pm – Alex Kautz Brazilian Jazz Quartet
Best known for his musicality, groove, and a profound understanding of a variety of styles, percussionist, educator and composer Alex Kautz has been an important part of the NY competitive music scene for the last decade and has played and/or recorded with some of the top artists in the industry. Alex’s quartet explores the rich sounds and textures of Brazilian music mixed with jazz. The quartet is a collective group with a fresh approach to Jazz and Brazilian Music. These musicians represent a generation that looks forward without losing their tradition, mixing different musical languages with a unique voice.
Jan 14, 11pm – Late–Night Jam with Beny Benack lll Quartet
By age 32, Emmy-nominated trumpeter and singer Benny Benack III has proven to be that rarest of talents: not only a fiery trumpet player with a stirring command of the post bop trumpet vernacular in the vein of Kenny Dorham and Freddie Hubbard, but also a singer with a sly, mature, naturally expressive delivery in the post-Sinatra mold, performing standards and his own astute songs with a thrilling sense of showmanship. This dual-threat ability was recognized by the 2022 Downbeat Critics Poll where he appeared as not only the #2 Rising Star Male Vocalist, but a top Rising Star Trumpeter as well. His superb intonation and bracing virtuosity enable him to handle astounding feats of originally composed vocalese (complex solos with written lyrics). On top of it all, he’s a highly capable pianist as well.
Jan 15, 7pm – Century Room Jazz Orchestra with the Benny Benack lll Quartet
Inspired by the Village Vanguard Jazz Orchestra, the 17-piece CRJO performs classic big band repertoire every Monday night at the Century Room starting at 7pm. Expect music from the Count Basie Orchestra, Duke Ellington Orchestra, the Thad Jones/Mel Louis Jazz Orchestra and much more with a special guest vocalist!
Jan 16, 7pm – Sean Mason Quartet
Sean Mason is a jazz pianist and composer based in New York City, quickly emerging as one of the premier talents of his generation. Sean’s unique voice in jazz is steeped in southern culture, giving extended time for groove without needing to fill in the space, while also displaying a range of vocabulary far beyond his years. Sean’s quartet plays his original music which has been described as highly melodic, swinging gospel jazz; as Sean puts it, “my purpose is to play dance music.” Folk music, stride piano and the style of Sean’s early hero Ray Charles are the main ingredients in a stew that is greater than the sum of its parts.
Jan 17, 7pm – Miguel Zenón Quartet
Multiple Grammy Nominee and Guggenheim and MacArthur Fellow Miguel Zenón represents a select group of musicians who have masterfully balanced and blended the often contradictory poles of innovation and tradition. Widely considered one of the most groundbreaking and influential saxophonists and composers of his generation, he has also developed a unique voice as a conceptualist, concentrating his efforts on perfecting a fine mix between jazz and his many musical influences.
Jan 18, 7-9pm -Melanie Scholtz & Aaron Rimbui – Reflections on Mama Africa
Melanie Scholtz is a South African born, multi award winning jazz singer and composer. She started playing the piano from the age of 5 and went on to study Opera at The University of Cape Town Opera School where she graduated Cum Laude with a Performer’s Diploma in Opera in 2000. She has released five successful solo albums and has won many awards; In 2010, Melanie was named the Standard Bank Young Artist for Jazz and in 2012 and won all three prizes at the prestigious Jazz Revelations competition as part of the Jazz a Juan Festival in Nice, France. Dubbed “the greatest pianist in East Africa” by the major African newspaper Daily Nation, Kenyan multi-instrumentalist and composer Aaron Rimbui is a rising force on the international scene, having collaborated with a global roster of major artists including Deitrick Haddon, Bobby Ricketts, Emmanuel Jal, Suzanna Owiyo and Eric Wainaina. He’s released five superb albums and was music director of the wildly popular East African reality competition show Tusker Project Fame.
Jan 18, 10:30pm – Late-Night Jam with Pete Swan Quartet
Pete Swan is a drummer, producer, band leader, and teacher. He has produced concerts featuring The Anderson Brothers, Ali Ryerson, Marcus Printup, Roxy Coss, Mike Eckroth, Emmet Cohen, Greg Abate, and many others. The quartet is made up of a very talented group of musicians with extensive backgrounds in performing, with very different approaches to playing that complement one another and meld into a unique sound. The four have been playing together every week for several years and that deep familiarity is evident in their soulful, passionate sound. The quartet includes saxophonist and composer Brice Winston, pianist and educator Angelo Versace and Scott Black on trumpet.
Jan 19 – 7-9pm - Bill Cantos Trio
Singer/pianist/songwriter Bill Cantos has spent much of the last few years collaborating with music legends Burt Bacharach and Herb Alpert & Lani Hall; he’s also toured the world with artists ranging from Phil Collins to Kirk Whalum, Diane Schuur to Sergio Mendes and Dori Caymmi. His songs have been covered by Ramsey Lewis, Patti Austin, Brenda Russell & Bobby Caldwell, Lea Salonga, Flora Purim, Cheryl Bentyne, and dozens more. The music Bill makes with his trio combines classic jazz, pop, Brazilian influences, vocal scat and piano improv with a unique and exciting energy. SENSIBILITY, his latest solo album, is a blend of originals (including songs written with Bacharach and Johnny Mandel) and surprising new takes on pop and jazz standards.
Jan 19, 11pm – Late-Night Jam with Max Goldschmid Quartet
Max Goldschmid is a multi-instrumentalist wunderkind, equally adept at performing on both woodwind and brass instruments and a consummate composer as well.
Jan 20, 7-9pm – Linda May Han Oh Quintet
Based in New York City, Linda May Han Oh is a bassist and composer who has performed and recorded with artists such as Pat Metheny, Kenny Barron, Joe Lovano, Dave Douglas, Terri Lyne Carrington, Steve Wilson, Geri Allen, and Vijay Iyer. She has received many awards such as 2nd place at the BASS2010 Competition, a semi-finalist at the BMW Bass competition and an honorary mention at the 2009 Thelonious Monk Bass Competition. Linda is currently on faculty at the New School - School of Jazz, as well as Berklee College of Music.
Jan 20, 11pm – Late-Night Jam with Brice Winston Quartet
Saxophonist and composer Brice Winston is a native of Tucson, AZ, but cut his teeth learning jazz in the city where jazz was created – New Orleans. For more than 16 years he lived in New Orleans performing with countless local musicians and several world-class figures. Brice is a member of the music faculty at the University of Arizona, is a resident artist/educator at Northern Arizona University, and continues to perform in jazz clubs, concert halls and jazz festivals all over the world.
MAINSTAGE FESTIVAL SHOWS
Jan 12, 8pm – Arturo Sandoval - Rialto Theatre
2013 Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient, ten- time Grammy Award Winner, Emmy award recipient, six-time Billboard Award winner, Arturo Sandoval is one of the world’s most acknowledged guardians of jazz trumpet and flugelhorn, as well as a renowned classical artist, pianist and composer. Anyone who has seen him on the piano, lyrically improvising a ballad, or has had the opportunity to enjoy the diversity of his music, through his compositions from the most straight-ahead jazz, Latin jazz or classical, knows that Arturo Sandoval is a prominent musician, and one of the most brilliant, multifaceted, and celebrated musicians of our time.
Jan 13, 12-4:30pm – Tucson Jazz Festival Jazz Jam – Hotel Congress Plaza
Get ready for an electrifying experience like no other! The Annual TJF Jazz Jam is back.
This event pairs all of the festival artists together in unique ensembles throughout the day. The atmosphere will be charged as the best jazz musicians from around the globe create a truly unique experience that can only happen within a festival. This event has quickly become a fan favorite and is the perfect chance to be front row to an unforgettable performance. Featuring Scott Black, Jason Carder, Diego Figueiredo, Chris Finet, Fabio Gouvia, Alex Kautz, Lewis Nash, Scott Peplowski, Angelo Versace, Arthur Vint and more.
Jan 13, 7:30pm - Calexico & the TSO, Jose Luis Gomez, Conductor - Linda Ronstadt Music Hall
Praised by NPR for their “sprawling, cross-cultural indie rock,” Calexico has spent the better part of the past three decades exploring the dusty musical borderlands of the American Southwest, crafting singular, cinematic songs as mysterious and magnificent as the arid desert landscapes that inspired them. Founded in Tucson, AZ, by guitarist/singer Joey Burns and drummer John Convertino, the band has received widespread acclaim with a string of arresting, evocative records that have blurred the lines between their roots, rock, and Latin influences.
Jan 13, 8pm – 2 Saxy Grace Kelly + Leo P, with special guests Moloko -191 N Toole
Two of the most prolific saxophone performers and bandleaders of today, Grace Kelly and Leo P, come together for an epic collaboration, packed with amazing music, humor, and fun visuals. As individuals, they have toured internationally with their bands to sold-out crowds, acclaimed albums, and television appearances. Together they have teamed up to bring unequivocal saxiness to the world with their chops, dance moves, and colorful hair. As Grace & Leo like to say, “Stay Saxy!.”
Jan 14, 2pm – Bossa Nova Wave – Diego Figueiredo and Ken Peplowski – Rialto Theatre
Playing the music of the famous album "Jazz Samba" from 1962 that launched the Brazilian Bossa Nova craze in North America, and more. Grammy nominated Diego Figueiredo is considered one of the most talented guitar players in the world today. His music is a fusion between Jazz, Bossa Nova and Classical. Peplowski is a leading clarinetist in jazz today and he has been a featured performer at practically every significant jazz festival, was music director of the Oregon Festival of American Music for eight years and for the Sarasota Jazz Festival. In 2014 he received the Jazz Club’s highest honor, its Satchmo Award, for his “unique and enduring contribution to the living history of jazz.”
Jan 14, 7:30pm – Emmet Cohen Trio & Lewis Nash and the Soul Jazz All-Stars – Rialto Theatre
Lewis Nash is one of jazz’s most recorded musicians, appearing on over 500 recordings including 10 Grammy winners and numerous Grammy nominees. In fact, Nash has the distinction of being the only musician in jazz history featured on the winners in both the “Best Jazz Vocal" and “Best Jazz Instrumental" album categories in two separate years. Multifaceted American jazz pianist and composer Emmet Cohen is one of his generation's pivotal figures in music and the related arts. Leader of the "Emmet Cohen Trio" and creator of the "Masters Legacy Series," Cohen is an internationally acclaimed jazz artist and dedicated music educator. He was a finalist in the 2011 Thelonious Monk International Piano Competition. Cohen has appeared at major international jazz festivals and at Lincoln Center's Rose Hall and Washington's Kennedy Center, in addition to headlining at the Village Vanguard and other major New York jazz clubs.
Jan 15 – 11am to 5:30pm – Downtown Jazz Fiesta – Hotel Congress Plaza and adjoining street
The streets come alive at this FREE festival event with multiple performance stages inside and out featuring top national and local artists. Food trucks and artisans line the streets to make this a fun-filled event for music lovers of all ages. TJF Artist in Residence Ken Peplowski will join the University of Arizona Studio Jazz Ensemble in one of the headliner events of the day. Considered one of the top saxophone players of his generation, he will inspire students at special masterclasses ahead of this signature performance.
Jan 16, 7pm – Delbert Anderson Quartet – Bahti Indian Arts (350 S. Convent Ave)
Delbert Anderson Quartet is led by Navajo (Diné) Jazz Trumpeter and Composer, Delbert Anderson. He is both a leader and innovator in today's contemporary jazz scene and a Diné culture bearer. His work brings forth traditional Diné songs once sung in social circles called "spinning songs," of love, healing and courtship and captures their voice in the language of jazz . Enjoy an evening of Dine inspired jazz and appetizers and art, paying homage to the rich culinary heritage of indigenous cultures in a beautiful gallery setting. Doors open at 6pm. Cash Bar will be available.
Jan 18, 7pm – Chief Adjuah (formerly Christian Scott) -Fox Tucson Theatre
The New Orleans trumpeter, composer, and producer Christian Scott, who performs as Chief Xian aTunde Adjuah, not only is among the most talented jazz fusionists of his time—he deeply considers his work’s place within its cultural and musical lineage. Adjuah is a player in communion with the past; his “stretch music” approach envisions jazz as a tradition to be expanded upon, one that can embrace contemporary musical languages, such as hip-hop. “Centennial Trilogy,” from 2017, commemorates the first-ever jazz recordings, and his most recent studio album as a leader, “Ancestral Recall,” attempts to decolonize sound, connecting styles and rhythms from Africa and its diaspora. Chief Adjuah continues his experiments in sonic and aesthetic integration during a residency at this haven for jazz progressives.
Jan 19, 7pm – Lizzy & The Triggermen – Hotel Congress Plaza Stage
Dubbed "one of the hottest swing bands in LA" (Fox 11), Lizzy & the Triggermen is forging a path like no other. Part of Lizzy & the Triggermen’s “time-traveling genius” (Music Connection) is their ability to thrillingly marry the old with the new, simultaneously transporting the audience back in time, and forward. At the helm is Lizzy: a charismatic siren with a searing wit and soaring voice. But the star power doesn’t stop with Lizzy. It emanates through her entire incredible band, a multi-generational dream team of crushers who are some of the most sought-after musicians in Los Angeles.
Jan 19, 8pm – Cécile McLorin Salvant - Centennial Hall
Cécile McLorin Salvant, is a composer, singer, and visual artist. The late Jessye Norman described Salvant as “a unique voice supported by an intelligence and full-fledged musicality, which light up every note she sings”. Salvant is an eclectic curator, unearthing rarely recorded, forgotten songs with strong narratives, interesting power dynamics, unexpected twists, and humor. She has received three consecutive Grammy Awards for Best Jazz Vocal Album for “The Window”, “Dreams and Daggers”, and “For One To Love”, and was nominated for the award in 2014 for her album “WomanChild.
Jan 20, 2pm – Blue Note Records 85th Anniversary Celebration – Fox Tucson Theatre
Blue Note Records is celebrating their 85th Anniversary with a US Tour starring “The Blue Note Quintet” – A group brought together to honor the label’s rich history and pave the way for the eclectic artists of today’s roster. 6 Time Grammy Award nominee Gerald Clayton leads the band as Musical Director and Pianist; “Gerald Clayton is one of the most accomplished, distinctive and innovative pianists performing today” says Don Was, the label’s President since 2012. Rounding out the group is vibraphonist Joel Ross, Saxophonist Immanuel Wilkins, Drummer Kendrick Scott, and Bassist Matt Brewer.
Jan 20, 3:30pm – The Black Market Trust – Hotel Congress Plaza Stage
The Black Market Trust is a five member jazz band based in Los Angeles. Since the 2012 release of their all-instrumental debut album “The Black Market Trust” features the Django Reinhardt inspired gypsy sound of acoustic instruments, and infuses classics from the Great American Songbook with intricate vocal harmonies inspired by The Beach Boys, and other artists influential to the group. Their sophomore album “II” featured a Top Ten hit on the Adult Contemporary charts, a signature version of “Route 66”.
Jan 20, 8pm- Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue – Fox Tucson Theatre
If anybody knows their way around a festival, it’s Trombone Shorty. Born Troy Andrews, he got his start (and nickname) earlier than most: at four, he made his first appearance at Jazz Fest performing with Bo Diddley; at six, he was leading his own brass band; and by his teenage years, he was hired by Lenny Kravitz to join the band he assembled for his Electric Church World Tour. Since 2010, he’s released four chart topping studio albums; toured with everyone from Jeff Beck to the Red Hot Chili Peppers; collaborated across genres with Pharrell, Bruno Mars, Mark Ronson, Foo Fighters, ZHU, Zac Brown, Normani, Ringo Starr, and countless more; played Coachella, Bonnaroo, Lollapalooza, Newport Folk, Newport Jazz, and nearly every other major festival.
About the 2024 Tucson Jazz Festival
The world class Tucson Jazz Festival celebrates 10 years of Jazz in January. Founded in 2014, the mission of the festival is to influence the discovery and celebration of live jazz, to provide a jazz experience that is socially and musically engaging, attracts visitors from around the country and supports music education through community engagement. The nine-day experience is a signature event for Downtown Tucson and plays a significant economic and cultural role in the greater Tucson area. For details on the 2024 Tucson Jazz Festival visit tucsonjazzfestival.org