Arizona Jazz Festival 2014

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Thousands of concert goers from all over the U.S. will be dancing in the desert October 24-26, 2014 when a stellar lineup of R&B and smooth jazz artists perform at the fall version of the Arizona Jazz Festival taking place at the posh Arizona Grand Resort & Spa. Tickets are on sale now for single-day and 3-day passes priced from $50 to $750 available at the festival’s website (www.ArizonaJazzFestival.com) and by calling event producer BTWconcerts.com at 602-244-8444.

 

The boys will be out to play when the Arizona Jazz Festival blasts off with perhaps the strongest opening night lineup in the semi-annual festival’s history. The cool cat in the hat, four-time Grammy nominee Boney James gets the event started with his soulful sax grooves that never fail to stir the crowd to spontaneously erupt into a fervent “Go Boney! Go Boney!” chant. Jaheim employs his distinctive husky voice to chronicle his pained upbringing and tales of ghetto life that have earned him three Grammy nominations. It is far from the end of the road for Philly’s finest Boyz II Men, a trio that harmonizes in perfect union while presenting their Grammy-winning songbook filled with R&B/pop vocal and a cappella hits. New Edition members Bobby Brown, Johnny Gill and Ralph Tresvant, each of whom has also scored solo hits, are touring as Heads of State and you can bank on a well-choreographed, high-octane show from these R&B superstars.

 

It will “Be OK” on Saturday when Grammy-winning alchemist Chrisette Michele takes the stage to sing her empowering love songs blending R&B, soul, jazz and hip hop. Equally capable of seducing with her proficient saxophone skills as well as her feminine wiles, Mindi Abair has it all. She will team with Booker T and Elliot Yamin for a hot buttered soul, blues and rock jam. Fantasia’s incomparable voice reflects the real-life pain that’s she endured molding her into a mesmerizing talent. At heart, crossover crooner Brian McKnight is a singer-songwriter able to captivate with compelling lyrics, rich melodies and an emotional vocal delivery. Those in attendance at last fall’s Arizona Jazz Festival are still abuzz over the show that “Uncle” Charlie Wilson put on. The BET Lifetime Achievement Award and Soul Train Icon Award winner marched through his hits backed by a skin tight band, elaborate dance routines performed with precision by an army of performers and enough costume changes to rival Beyoncé. Expect more of the same.

 

The energy continues on full blast Sunday with sax showman Eric Darius making sure that patrons will arrive early to catch the consistent crowd pleaser. British guitarist Peter White and sax powerhouse Euge Groove have racked up enough No. 1 hits between them to keep the festival going for days, but they’ll rip through their biggest and best in an afternoon session. Mint Condition keeps the endangered full band concept alive with a rich R&B sound spiked with funk, rock, Latin and reggae. Multi-talented keyboardist Brian Culbertson is responsible for 27 No. 1 hits and is out on his 20th anniversary tour while supporting his sixth album to debut at No. 1, “Another Long Night.” Kem’s suave and sophisticated voice melts into steamy, sensual grooves that have earned him a pair of Grammy nominations and a Billboard Music Award. The festivities conclude in old school party mode with Maze featuring Frankie Beverly who leads audiences through sing-a-long sets of the outfit’s enduring classics.

 

The Arizona Jazz Festival is a lifestyle experience as fans spend the weekend immersed in the music, the lavish resort’s first-class amenities and the adjacent food, fashion and crafts expo. The Arizona Grand Resort & Spa is the state’s only award-winning all-suite resort in Phoenix set amidst a challenging 18-hole golf course, spacious athletic club, luxurious spa and salon and a 7-acre water park. Six different dining options on the property enable festival goers to never have to leave the grounds during the weekend. A limited number of tickets and hotel packages are available through the festival’s website.

 

 

About BTWconcerts.com

 

Phoenix, Arizona-based BTWconcerts.com is one of the preeminent concert producers in the Southwest. Among the star-studded jazz and R&B concerts and multiday music and lifestyle festivals that the company promotes at first-class resorts for adult audiences are the Arizona Jazz Festival (http://ArizonaJazzFestival.com), San Diego Jazz Festival (http://www.SanDiegoJazzFest.com) and the Las Vegas Jazz Festival (http://www.LVJazzFestival.com). BTWconcerts.com’s sister company for events at sea, BTWatsea.com will launch the maiden voyage of the Maxwell + The 7 Seas Cruise (http://www.maxwellatsea.com/) May 3-10, 2015 hosted by the Grammy-winning balladeer.

Source:   Great Scott P.R.oductions

 

The Arizona Jazz Festival

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The endless Arizona sky will be filled with a galaxy of stars day and night during the Arizona Jazz Festival slated for October 25-27, 2013 at the Arizona Grand Resort & Spa in Phoenix, Arizona. More than 13,000 contemporary jazz and soul fans from across the nation are expected to flock to the lavish desert resort to enjoy performances by a stellar slate of Grammy-winners and chart-toppers along with a weekend of revelry. Tickets are on sale now for the three-day festival or as a single-day event and are available online at www.arizonajazzfestival.com and by calling 602.244.8444.

The Arizona Jazz Festival opens with an evening of seduction starting with the tantalizing pairing of saxophonist Eric Darius and R&B vocalist-producer Lyfe Jennings, who will set the mood for marquee-topper Maxwell, a Grammy-winning soul balladeer. Stick around for the official after-party at the resort.

Live music begins Saturday when nattily-attired guitarist Nick Colionne and new jazz swagger sax player J. White hit the stage followed by a trio set by saxophonists Warren Hill and Tom Braxton with blues-based guitar slinger Jeff Golub. Powerhouse tenors Gerald Albright, Richard Elliot and Euge Groove will blow a fierce sax storm in the desert before ten-time Grammy winner Chaka Khan belts out a song list filled with her massive crossover hits. The Queen of Neo Soul Erykah Badu will reign over majestic grooves and Baduizms preceding a set by “Uncle” Charlie Wilson, a 2013 BET lifetime achievement award winner, crooning cuts from his Grammy-nominated R&B songbook. After the concert, a number of the festival artists will head into the Arizona Grand Resort & Spa for an all-star jam.

It’s going to be a great-looking Sunday when saxophonists Jessy J and Michael Lington link with keyboardist Jonathan Fritzen to open the final day followed by a neo soul session from vocalist Eric Benet. Emerging saxmen Elan Trotman and Dominic Amato will accompany R&B chanteuse Melanie Fiona for an outing. Captivating multi-instrumentalist Brian Culbertson will inject a potent dose of funk-jazz into the mix during a high-octane performance before fellow blue-eyed soul man Robin Thicke blurs the lines during a set list certain to include the #1 summer smash “Blurred Lines.” Closing the festival is edgy multiplatinum R&B personality and reality television star Keyshia Cole.

“We pulled out all the stops for the Arizona Jazz Festival, which is perhaps the most spectacular lineup we have ever presented. While every festival that BTWconcerts.com produces and promotes is special, this is our hometown festival. We look forward to hosting guests from all over the U.S. that are passionate about jazz and R&B. It’s going to be an unforgettable weekend of live music and partying,” said Brad Laughlin of BTWconcerts.com, which also produces the Las Vegas Jazz Festival and the San Diego Jazz Festival.

The Arizona Jazz Festival offers reserved seating with ticket prices starting at $240.00 for the entire weekend or $65.00 for a single-day seat. For the enthusiast, tickets can be upgraded to include the Rock Star Experience that provides VIP tent access, a complimentary meal and drinks, artist meet & greets, Arizona Jazz Festival commemorative bag, t-shirt, poster and laminate, and entry to the Friday night after-party and Saturday night all-star jam.

About BTWconcerts.com

Phoenix, Arizona-based BTWconcerts.com is one of the premiere concert producers in the Southwest. Among the star-studded jazz and R&B concerts and multiday music and lifestyle festivals that the company promotes are the Arizona Jazz Festival (http://arizonajazzfestival.com), Las Vegas Jazz Festival (http://www.lvjazzfestival.com) and San Diego Jazz Festival (http://www.sandiegojazzfest.com).

Eric Darius – The Smooth Breeze

Eric Darius released his latest album and Shanachie Entertainment debut, On A Mission, in the summer of 2010. Danny Weiss, VP of Jazz A&R for Shanachie states, “If you think of jazz as a wonderful tree whose trunk is its great tradition and whose branches are the never ending innovations of its young disciples, then Eric Darius is the newest branch of that tree. He can swing like the masters and funk like a hip-hopper; truly the blossoming of tomorrow’s jazz.”

The seeds have been sown and Eric Darius unearths his talents not only as a saxophonist but equally important, as a composer and co-producer on On A Mission. The saxman ,who first started experimenting with writing at age thirteen, cites Stevie Wonder and Herbie Hancock as among his biggest compositional influences. Darius acknowledges that music has always been an outlet for him to express his emotions and experiences.

Hailing from a musical family (his father from Haiti and mother from Jamaica) and raised in Tampa where he still lives, Eric Darius realized his calling for music at an early age. “ I remember being nine and hearing a saxophonist play at my church. I instantly loved the sound…I remember being blown away by the soul and emotion of the instrument. It was as if I could almost hear the words and lyrics with each note being played…it was at that point that I fell in love with the instrument. The saxophone has a way of reaching people in a way that no other instrument does. It is the closest to the human voice.”

Eric Darius published with permission of Bettie Grace Miner.