Published on: Monday, June 1, 2015 Takoma Park Newsletter

Takoma Park JazzFest 20th Anniversary: The Best of the Fest

Free performances all day June 14

On Sunday, June 14, downtown Takoma Park, Maryland, will once again jump, swing and jive to the sounds of America’s music: jazz. The 20th annual Takoma Park JazzFest will bring an eclectic range of performers to town for more than a dozen free performances from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Full information is available at “Jazz music is America’s gift to the world,” says festival president Bruce Krohmer. “It’s a uniquely American sound, and enjoying it outdoors at one of our two stages is a fantastic way to pass a Sunday afternoon. And it’s free!” To celebrate the completion of its teenage years, JazzFest will bring back some of the most popular performers of the festival’s first two decades. “Whatever your taste in jazz, you’ll find something to love,” says Krohmer.

Takoma Park’s own Chuck Redd, an internationally acclaimed drummer and vibraphonist, will be a featured performer and will conduct one of the workshops. His swinging sounds have been featured on more than 75 recordings, and he’s toured with legends such as Dizzy Gillespie and Mel Torme.

Local enthusiasts can also look forward to the sounds of Veronneau, the Hokum JazzTrio, the Nicole Saphos After Hours Duo, the Dave Kline Band, Flutevisions, Matt Wigler, the Uptown Vocal Jazz Quartet, the Mary Alouette Quartet, the Lovejoy Group, and the acclaimed Takoma Park Middle School Jazz Ensemble.

“JazzFest embraces a broad range of styles, both instrument and vocal: bossa nova and samba, swing, R&B and contemporary sounds, vintage sounds from the ’20s and ’30s – you’ll hear your favorites, and sounds that are new to you, too,” says Krohmer.

Takoma Park Jazz Fest
June 14, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Carroll Ave., downtown Takoma Park

Making its debut this year will be Brulee, a quintet with a sound that’s been described as “jazz-infused, Americana-marinated, alt-pop.” This band wowed the judges to win the 2015 Jazz Brawl, sponsored by JazzFest to showcase emerging new performers.

In addition to performances, JazzFest will provide a wide range of other activities, for a full day and evening of entertainment:

  • Free drum and guitar workshops in the Olive Lounge, adjacent to festival activities.
  • Crafts, clothes and collectibles from more than 60 local vendors.
  • Food trucks and booths for every palate.
  • An official after-party at Takoma Republic restaurant, adjacent to festival events.

And for those who can’t get enough jazz, JazzFest is again partnering with the American Film Institute. The AFI Silver Theater in downtown Silver Spring (three blocks from Red Line Metro) will show several jazz-themed movies in the week leading up to the big event.

The films are:

  •  “Anita O’Day: The Life of a Jazz Singer,” June 5,
  • “Keep on Keepin’ On,” about trumpeter Clark Terry, June 5,
  • “Whiplash,” for which J.K. Simmons won an Academy Award, June 6, 7 and 10.

JazzFest is an all- volunteer communitybased organization, supported by the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County, the Maryland State Arts Council; the City of Takoma Park, Long and Foster Real Estate and the Takoma Foundation.

This article appeared in the June 2015 edition of the Takoma Park Newsletter. The Takoma Park Newsletter is available for download here.