The 2006 Rochester International Jazz Festival is heavy on greats who are carrying on legacies. McCoy Tyner emerged from John Coltrane's classic quartet. Wayne Shorter was part of Miles Davis' greatest septet. And Phil Woods, who, as a teenager, got to know Charlie Parker, will revive some of the master's music.
On the funk side, James Brown is not called the Godfather of Soul for nothing; he is the legacy. And Etta James is the First Lady of the Blues. Woody Allen carries on a tradition of Dixieland jazz and reminds up of the music's New Orleans roots.
An equally important part of any RIJF is the emergence of new talent, the chance to hear a rising star like Robert Glasper before he's a household name. It's also about expanding your horizons as a listener. Catch Billy Bang or the Jacob Fred Jazz Odyssey and open your mind to the diverse paths jazz can take.
Here are previews of all of the acts to help you plot your festival schedule.
--- Ron NetskyClick here to check out City's guide to the festival here!
Eastman Theatre Series: Headliner shows are held in the Eastman Theatre (60 Gibbs Street). These are ticketed shows; a ClubPass doesn't work here. All shows are at 8 p.m. Tickets, which range from $27.50 to $95, are available through Ticketmaster (www.ticketmaster.com, 232-1900) or at the Auditorium Theater Box Office (885 East Main Street).
ClubSeriesPass: A ClubPass is your ticket to the Club Series: You can go to as many concerts as you'd like (100-plus) at smaller clubs and venues. A ClubPass is $95. If you don't have a ClubPass you can still buy tickets ($15-$25) to the Club Pass Series concerts at the door, if space is available. But be advised that ClubPass shows tend to sell out. Even if you have a Pass, you should get there early. Admission is space-limited.
The best thing about the pass is the sense of freedom and serendipity it affords. You can walk from venue to venue, sampling everything until you find an act that you like. Some of the best are bound to be acts you've never heard of. If you're going to more than four or five shows, get the pass.
The Club Pass is available at www.rochesterjazz.com (service charges apply), at Ticketmaster (232-1900, www.ticketmaster.com), or in person at the Ticket Express Box office (885 East Main Street) or the Jazz Fest Info Center & Store (10 Gibbs Street, weekdays through June 8, daily June 9-17).
Club Pass venues:
Kilbourn Hall, 26 Gibbs Street
RIJF Club Pass Big Tent, the corner of Main and Gibbs Streets
Max of Eastman Place, 387 East Main Street
Milestones, 170 East Avenue
Montage Grille, 50 Chestnut Plaza
Little Theatre, 240 East Avenue
Free shows: The 2006 RIJF features three free show series. The East Avenue Stage (corner of East Avenue and Chestnut Street) hosts shows in the evenings on June 10, 16, and 17.
The Rochester Area Community Foundation's Museum & Gallery Family Series features shows at 4 p.m. June 9-11 at Memorial Art Gallery (500 University Avenue) and June 12-14 at George Eastman House (900 East Avenue), plus 3 p.m. Dixieland cruises on the Mary Jemison Riverboat on the Genesee River June 15-17 (board at Corn Hill Landing).
The Jazz Street Stage (corner of Gibbs Street and East Avenue) goes daily this year, with shows starting at 5p.m. There is food and drink to buy, the street is blocked to traffic, and there's music in the air.
Parking for all East End venues can be found in the East End parking garage at the corner of Scio Street and East Avenue.
There are two websites for information on RIJF: www.rochester-citynews.com and www.rochesterjazz.com. Or visit the JazzFestStore & InfoCenter, 10 Gibbs Street, 234-2002, Monday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., through June 8; and daily, 10 a.m. to midnight, June 9-17.