The 39th Annual Detroit Jazz Festival | Aug 31st – Sept. 3rd, 2018

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Diverse, Powerful Lineup Announced for
39th Annual Detroit Jazz Festival
Presented by Quicken Loans

Artist-in-Residence Chick Corea to Perform
with Akoustic Band, Elektric Band, and
Detroit Jazz Festival Symphony Orchestra

2018 Festival to Debut Inaugural
“Resident Ensemble” with Terri Lyne Carrington
and Esperanza Spalding in Three Special Performances

(L-R) Chris Dave, Artist-in-Residence Chick Corea, Cécile McLorin Salvant

In keeping with its tradition of assembling a unique, true-to-jazz lineup of artists to headline its signature event, the Detroit Jazz Festival Foundation has announced more than 30 performances that will take the stage during Labor Day weekend. Ranging from leading women artists and up-and-comers to legendary artists that play the spectrum of jazz undertones, the impact of the Festival’s diverse programming will span generations.

The headliners were announced yesterday during a luncheon at the Detroit Athletic Club, where Quicken Loans also announced it would return as the Detroit Jazz Festival’s presenting sponsor for the 2018 and 2019 Festivals. The company began its presenting sponsorship of the world’s largest free jazz festival in 2016.

In its 39th year, the Detroit Jazz Festival presented by Quicken Loans, which runs Friday, August 31 through Monday, September 3, 2018 in downtown Detroit, will kick off with performances by Artist-in-Residence Chick Corea and the 2018 inaugural Resident Ensemble, a new addition to the Festival’s annual programming. Each year a core ensemble noted for their artistry, connectivity and camaraderie will engage with the Detroit community and prepare multiple performances of varying texture, instrumentation and repertoire for the Festival. This year’s Resident Ensemble will feature Terri Lyne Carrington and Esperanza Spalding, who will lead three sets, with one incorporating a technology element. Originally meant to include the late Geri Allen, much of the Ensemble’s focus will be inspired by her music.

“Jazz has always been about freedom, communication and individual expression, and there’s nothing that encapsulates the depth of the genre better than a diverse lineup like the one we have planned this year,” said Chris Collins, president and artistic director of the Detroit Jazz Festival Foundation. “From legends to artists just embarking on their musical careers, to some of the most powerful female artists that have ever touched the genre, the 39th Annual Detroit Jazz Festival presented by Quicken Loans will be free-spirited in nature and offer a unique cultural flair of jazz stylings for all to enjoy.”

Corea’s varying performances throughout Labor Day weekend; including performances with his Akoustic Band, Elektric Band, and a sextet with the Detroit Jazz Festival Symphony Orchestra; embody several different jazz stylings, setting a precedent for the wide range of performances jazz enthusiasts can expect to see at the Festival. A few other artists blending a variety of jazz tones and elements sure to engage a younger, more diverse audience, include Chris Dave and the Drumhedz, Sasha Masakowski, Marcus Miller, Nicholas Payton and Omar Sosa. Through these artists and others, Festival attendees can anticipate grooving to an array of jazz music incorporating elements of electronic, avant-garde, New Orleans, rock, modern, classical, spiritual and more.

Some of the more influential women artists headlining the Festival, beyond the Resident Ensemble and Masakowski, include Cécile McLorin Salvant, Tia Fuller, the original all-female group Straight Ahead, and Trio of Oz’s Rachel Z.

Here’s a comprehensive list of the dynamic artists confirmed for this year’s Festival:

Friday, August 31

Dr. Valade’s Brass Band Led by New Orleans Legend Shannon Powell
Resident Ensemble: Terri Lyne Carrington and Esperanza Spalding — Tribute to Geri Allen
Artist-in-Residence: Chick Corea Akoustic Band

Saturday, September 1

Straight Ahead 25th Anniversary Reunion Featuring: Regina Carter, Marion Hayden, Gayelynn McKinney and Alina Morr
Julian Lage Trio
Dr. Lonnie Smith Organ Trio
Detroit Jazz Festival National Instrumental Competition Winner
Tia Fuller
Nicholas Payton — Afro-Caribbean Mixtape
Sasha Masakowski & Art Market
Emmet Cohen Trio
Trio of Oz featuring: Omar Hakim and Rachel Z
Artist-in-Residence: Chick Corea Elektric Band
Ravi Coltrane’s Universal Consciousness: Melodic Meditations of Alice Coltrane

Sunday, September 2

Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio
Harold López-Nussa with Grégoire Maret and Pedrito Martinez
Eddie Daniels Quartet with The Harlem String Quartet
Omar Sosa Quarteto AfroCubano
Karriem Riggins Detroit Generations
Hub-Tones: Freddie Hubbard 80th Birthday Celebration — Featuring: Nicholas Payton, Randy Brecker, David Weiss and Dwight Adams
Chris Dave and the Drumhedz
Resident Ensemble: Terri Lyne Carrington and Esperanza Spalding — Tribute to Geri Allen
ASABA Trio — Hirofumi Asaba
Senri Oe
J.C. Heard JazzWeek@Wayne All-Stars
Pat Martino Quintet
Marcus Miller

Monday, September 3

Four Freshmen and 5 Trombones
Cécile McLorin Salvant
The Brecker Brothers Band Reunion
Resident Ensemble: Terri Lyne Carrington and Esperanza Spalding — Tribute to Geri Allen
Christian Sands Trio
Joey DeFrancesco: Project Freedom
Artist-in-Residence: Chick Corea with the Detroit Jazz Festival Symphony Orchestra, Conductor: Steven Mercurio

The full Festival schedule will be available at as the event nears.

(L-R) Ravi Coltrane, Dr. Lonnie Smith, Pat Martino

“There is no better place to spend Labor Day weekend than downtown at the Detroit Jazz Festival,” said Gretchen Valade, chair of the Detroit Jazz Festival Foundation Board of Directors. “Once again, we have a truly remarkable, all jazz, world-class lineup for Detroiters — and our guests from around the world — to enjoy in one of the best cities I know.”

In addition to once again creating a stellar lineup, the Foundation has brought back Detroit Jazz Fest LIVE! For just $10, Festival attendees and out-of-towners unable to make it to the Festival can livestream performances from all four stages, all four days via their smartphone, tablet or desktop. Additionally, the livestreaming service features select performances throughout the year from the Foundation’s year-round initiatives, Festival schedules, maps and more. Jazz enthusiasts that purchased Detroit Jazz Fest LIVE! for the 2017 Festival, will need to repurchase the livestream service for 2018. Register for the livestream at


Major corporate partners include Quicken Loans, JPMorgan Chase & Co., DTE Energy Foundation, Ford Motor Company, Carhartt, Inc., Mack Avenue Records, Dirty Dog Jazz Cafe, Bedrock and Comcast Cable. Additional partners include Absopure, AMTECH International, Andiamo, Bingham Legal Group, Central Michigan University, Cliff Bell’s, Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center, Detroit Saxophone Center, Digital Planet, Domino’s, Downtown Detroit Partnership, George Johnson & Company, Giffels Webster, Greektown Casino-Hotel, Lyft, Metro Cars, MGM Grand Detroit, Oakland University, Pepsi, Rocket Fiber, Stella Artois, Steinway Piano Gallery of Detroit, St. John Providence, Wayne State University, Whole Foods Market and Woodward Gallery. Media partners include Fox 2, WJR, WEMU-FM, DownBeat, JazzTimes, Metro Times, WDET, WRCJ and Detroit Public Television. The Greening of the Festival is supported by a generous grant from the DTE Energy Foundation.

For more information on the Detroit Jazz Festival, please visit:
DL Media

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