JAS Aspen Snowmass, celebrating their 25th Anniversary in 2015, has just announced the line-up for the June Experience and Summer JAS Café Series, which will now include shows at both the Little Nell Hotel and on the upstairs level of the new Aspen Art Museum.
The JAS June Experience at the Benedict Music Tent kicks-off with two very special performances on Friday, June 26. First, at 6:00pm, JAS will celebrate Frank Sinatra’s 100th birthday and jazz roots with the legendary Count Basie Orchestra, with Grammy® winning vocalist Kurt Elling, reprising the iconic Sinatra at the Sands recordings with Basie, and Grammy® nominated vocalist Roberta Gambarini, with her quartet. The evening will conclude with Maceo Parker and his white hot ten piece band performing “Soul Classics” from the songbooks of James Brown, Stevie Wonder and other legends of soul, along with his trademark “Funk Fiesta.” Maceo’s current show features James Brown inspired dance moves and will set the tone for a true 25th year opening night celebration!
The majority of seats for the Friday performances will be general admission which JAS is pricing at $35, the same ticket price that the initial Jazz Aspen Festival in 1991 featured, making it possible for the widest cross section of the Roaring Fork Valley to attend. From Sinatra to James Brown, the evening will celebrate iconic American music in a community celebration marking the launch of JAS’ 25th Summer Season. “Most of the Artists on this opening night celebration have special relationships with JAS, from Basie performing in ’92, Maceo playing long Friday sets opening our Labor Day Festivals, and Gambarini’s memorable JAS Café shows in recent years. Along with the Free Lawn Party, this will make for a great night and kick-off,” said Jim Horowitz, President and CEO of JAS.
On Saturday, June 27 the legendary Chicago makes their first ever Aspen appearance. Considered one of the longest running and most successful pop/rock ‘n’ roll groups in history, Chicago is the highest charting American band in Billboard Magazine’s list of Top 100 artists of all time, coming in at #13.
The first weekend of the Experience concludes on Sunday, June 28 with the return of Naturally 7 followed by guitar virtuosos Rodrigo y Gabriela. Naturally 7, who had an unforgettable performance in front of the Tedeschi Trucks Band in 2013, has perfected an intriguing a cappella style they’ve branded “Vocal Play” – each member singing their vocal part using the sound of instruments like drums, bass and guitar. Rodrigo y Gabriela, the popular opening act at the 2011 JAS Labor Day Festival, is one of the biggest selling acoustic instrumental acts in the world. The two keep it simple, playing face to face, guitar versus guitar, rhythm and melody, a fiery and percussive high-energy show.
On Monday, July 6, JAS and the Aspen Music Festival and School will co-present a very special evening at the Benedict Music Tent with the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra featuring Wynton Marsalis. JAS and AMFS will once again offer an on-site pre-concert dinner at the JAS Patron Hospitality Tent, mirroring the Patron (VIP) ticket that JAS provides at their Experiences. Patron tickets will include gourmet catered hors d’oeuvres, dinner and dessert, full open bars, on-site parking, and premium floor seating for the concert. Reserved and general admission seating are also be available for the performance.
The expanded Free Lawn Party, a huge hit at the recent JAS June Experiences, will again take place on the Benedict Music Tent grounds prior to the main stage acts on June 26-28, starting at 5:00pm Friday and Sunday and 6:00pm on Saturday. The party includes a variety of on-site food booths, beverage and full bar service vendors and live music on two stages.
Tickets for the June 26-28 JAS June Experience performances at Benedict Music Tent will go on-sale Thursday, March 5 through the JAS Box Office at 866-JAS-TIXX (527-8499), www.jazzaspensnowmass.org or at the Belly Up Box Office in Aspen (970-544-9800). Tickets for the JALC/Wynton Marsalis show are on-sale now at the AMFS Box Office, 970-925-9042 or www.aspenmusicfestival.com.
Patron (VIP) tickets for the JAS June Experience are available now at 970-920-4996 or www.jazzaspensnowmass.org. Lodging and ticket packages can be found at 800-SNOWMASS.
JAS has also announced the line-up for this summer’s JAS Café Series, which will feature six Artists (three runs downstairs at the Little Nell and three runs on the upstairs level of the Aspen Art Museum). Aspen Art Museum shows will take place in the Museum Café and adjacent patio. Patrons of the 7:00pm JAS Café Upstairs at the AAM shows will have the option of including a 3-course dinner, prepared by Julia and Allen Domingos of Epicure Catering, with their concert ticket.
The series starts on June 30 – July 1 at the AAM with the return of the fiery and swinging hot jazz of renowned French artists the Django Reinhardt NY Festival. On July 8 – 9 the music returns to the Little Nell with the unique California jazz vocalist Jacqui Naylor. Former JAS Academy Artist Director Christian McBride and his Trio (featuring former JAS Academy student Ulysses Owens, Jr. and Christian Sands) will perform at the Nell on July 15 – 16, followed by Tony Award nominated jazz/pop vocalist and pianist Ann Hampton Callaway July 22nd and 23rd.
JAS will finish out the Café Summer Series with two more weekends at the Aspen Art -Museum, including the brilliant jazz/pop/soul/gospelvocalist and jazz chart topping Lizz Wright on August 7 – 8 and one more artist still to be announced for August 13 – 14. Lizz Wright made her local debut in a memorable double bill co-headlining for JAS June in 2006 with Jamie Cullum.
Summer JAS Café tickets will be on-sale next Tuesday, March 10th at jazzaspensnowmass.org.
JAS will celebrate their 25th Anniversary with their biggest and best summer benefit yet: “Le Freak Lounge” on July 17 at the Ranch of Bob and Soledad Hurst, honoring Janus Capital Group Founder Tom Bailey for stewardship of the JANUS/JAS Title Sponsorship from 1993 – 2005. Tickets for “Le Freak Lounge” featuring disco-soul superstars Chic with Nile Rodgers, are on-sale now at jazzaspensnowmass.org.
For more information on Jazz Aspen Snowmass special events and education programming please visit www.jazzaspensnowmass.org or call JAS at 970-920-4996.