17th Annual Vail Jazz Party offers finest jazz artists of the 21st century

March 17, 2011 – Vail, Colorado – The Vail Jazz Festival is warming up for its 17th anniversary season, featuring live jazz all summer long, and culminating with the 17th annual Vail Jazz Party, taking place Labor Day weekend, September 2-6, 2011.

“We have a perfect storm of jazz artists lined up for the Party,” said Bobby Floyd is among the artists who will perform during this summer's Vail Jazz Festival. Howard Stone, chairman and artistic director of the Vail Jazz Foundation.  “We’ve already signed the latest and greatest musicians in Jazz today, playing everything from trumpet to vibraphone, plus we are bringing back audience favorites to make our 17th anniversary season better than ever,” continued Stone.

The unique Party format is designed so every musician plays virtually every day of the festival.  Confirmed artists include accomplished soloists and highly sought-after ensembles.  2011 will include a very special reunion: the Monty Alexander Trio will be reunited on the 35th anniversary of their classic 1976 recording at the Montreux Festival.  The trio features Monty Alexander (piano), John Clayton (bass) and Jeff Hamilton (drums).   Vocalist/pianist Dena DeRose and her Trio will be on hand to light up the Party, and Terell Stafford (trumpet) will play with his Quintet, including Tim Warfield (tenor sax), Bruce Barth (piano), Peter Washington (bass), and Dana Hall (drums).

Soloists include jazz pianist Shelly Berg and Hammond B-3 wizard Bobby Floyd.  Guitarist Graham Dechter, Tenor saxophonist Jerry Weldon and bassist Tom Kennedy will join the Party, while drummer/singer songwriter David Tull will also perform.  Back by popular demand will be the multi-faceted instrumentalist/trombonist Wycliffe Gordon, drummer Ernie Adams, and trumpet player Byron Stripling.  Stripling, who leads the Columbus Jazz Orchestra, will also present a multi media salute to Louis Armstrong, while Grammy winning pianist/composer/arranger Bill Cunliffe will present a multi media Salute to the Modern Jazz Quartet.

The Clayton Brothers Quintet will once again serve as anchor and a major force at the Jazz Party.   The Quintet consists of John Clayton, Jeff Clayton, Terell Stafford, Bill Cunliffe and Lewis Nash, each of whom also doubles as educator-in-residence for the annual Vail Jazz Workshop, a ten day-long intensive course for 12 promising high school-aged jazz musicians.  The Workshop is in its 16th year, and takes place in Vail during the week before Labor Day.  The workshop students will then perform at the Jazz Party as the “Vail Jazz All Stars”.

Tickets, Passes and More Information

Tickets start at just $45, and an all event pass including preferred seating at all shows and cocktails and dinner with artists, costs just $350.  Tickets, passes, or gift certificates to the Labor Day Jazz Party can be purchased through the Vail Jazz Foundation office at 970.479.6146, or 888-VAILJAM (824-5526).  Online tickets will soon be available for purchase at www.vailjazz.org.

About the Vail Jazz Foundation

The Vail Jazz Foundation (VJF)’s mission is to perpetuate jazz music through live performances that showcase the artistry and talent of great jazz musicians, and through jazz education, with a focus on young musicians and young audiences.  By taking jazz into the schools, the VJF hopes to create an awareness at a younger level, thus creating future audiences and potentially, future jazz musicians. The VJF is a 501 c 3 non-profit organization that is funded by private and corporate donations as well as grants, and is based in Vail, Colorado.

Brought to you by:
Sponsors of the Vail Jazz Foundation include the Town of Vail, Alpine Bank, Alpine Party Rentals, The Arrabelle, BBE Sound, Colorado Mountain Express, Ella Fitzgerald Charitable Foundation, EverVail, Hertz, Londer Vineyards, Ritz-Carlton Residences, United Way Eagle River Valley, Vail Daily, and Vail Resorts. In kind sponsors include Alpin Aire, Colorado Mountain Express – Official Transportation Provider, Hertz, Jack FM, KZYR – The Zephyr 97.7 FM, KUVO-Jazz89.3 FM, KVBA-TV8, Plum TV, Rocky Mountain Reprographics and many other businesses and private donors for whose support we are very, very grateful.



Contact:  Mia Vlaar, vjf@vailjazz.org, (970) 479-6146

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