BALTIMORE JAZZ ALLIANCE HOSTS 2019 FATHER’S DAY JAZZ FEST IN PARTNERSHIP WITH ST. JOHN’S EPISCOPAL CHURCH IN WAVERLY
BALTIMORE, MD. The city of Baltimore really lives up to its moniker, “Charm City,” with its many cultural, historic, and artistic attractions. Among them is its rich and lively jazz scene, where on any night of the week, lovers of this quintessential American musical genre can find great music being played in clubs, bars, and concert halls.
To highlight and celebrate jazz in Charm City, the Baltimore Jazz Alliance (BJA) is partnering with St. John’s Episcopal Church to hold a free all-day festival from 1:00 pm to 7:00 pm on June 16th 2019, on the grounds of the church at 3009 Greenmount Avenue in Waverly, a bustling neighborhood of small businesses as diverse as Main Street Hats, Normal’s Books and Records, 901 Arts, and Peabody Heights Brewery, as well as home to the thriving 32nd Street Farmers Market. Parking is plentiful, and there is an indoor option in case of rain. Also partnering with BJA and the church is LCR Jazzy Events, an events management company specializing in events for non-profits.
This free event will feature a full day of live music (jazz, with a hint of blues and some funk), plus a collection of classic cars, activities for kids, and food, beer, and wine. The event will showcase a variety of artists from the Baltimore area, introducing them to some new audiences, while giving existing fans an opportunity to enjoy them in a festive outdoor setting that’s fun for the whole family. BJA’s “Musical Instrument Petting Zoo” will provide an opportunity for children to see up close, learn about, and try out, some of the instruments commonly used in jazz ensembles.
The event will be free to the public, with food and drink available for purchase. There will also be spaces for vendors, including informational booths from local organizations.
Baltimore Jazz Alliance 847 N. Howard Street Baltimore, MD 21201
The music line-up includes: • Headliner Rufus Roundtree and Da B’more Brass Factory playing New Orleans-style jazz and funk • The Kings of Crownsville, a six-piece ensemble featuring an eclectic mix of straightahead and New Orleans-style jazz, R&B, and American pop • The Eric Kennedy Ensemble (straight-ahead jazz), led by drummer Eric Kennedy • The all-female Women of Baltimore Jazz Collective) (straight-ahead jazz), led by Delandria Mills (flute) and Charmaine Michelle (trumpet), with Rachel Winder (alto sax and vocals), Sequoia Snyder (piano), Amy Shook (bass), and Sheritta Harris (drums).
The lineup is still in the works and will include more popular Baltimore artists, sponsored in part by local presenters such as Contemporary Arts, Germano’s Cabaret, and Jazzway 6004, with additional sponsorship from Maryland State Arts Council, 32nd Street Market, and more. Further details will be provided through the BJA website, e-mail list, and social media pages.
The idea for this event came from a desire by the church to find new ways to use their remarkable facilities to benefit the surrounding community. Linda Richardson of Jazzy Events offered to help them coordinate it, and she reached out to the BJA for help with involving the larger Baltimore jazz community. Together they formed a plan to host the one-day event.
The goal of this event is threefold. It will be a welcoming event for a vibrant and diverse neighborhood, in a space that is easily accessible and central to the neighborhood, but which is currently under-utilized by the community. The hosts expect to draw attendees from around the region, and to give them a glimpse of the Waverly neighborhood and all it has to offer. From the greater Baltimore jazz community perspective, the goal of festival is similar to many of BJA’s past events – providing an opportunity for local jazz artists to perform for new audiences, and to introduce more people to the wealth of great jazz talent available in our area.
Baltimore has a rich jazz history and a thriving jazz culture, and there has been widely expressed interest in and support for creating a Baltimore jazz festival that could serve as an anchor for this cultural scene. In fall of 2016, the BJA, in partnership with the Baltimore City Department of Recreation and Parks, mounted a jazz fest in Druid Hill Park, which despite the pouring rain, attracted some 300 people to hear a varied line-up of Baltimore jazz musicians. Since then, the BJA has continued to plan for future festivals, beginning with this one. The BJA hopes to make this an annual occasion which can grow over time and bring increasing cultural interest to the Waverly neighborhood.
Sponsorship opportunities are available, so individuals and businesses who would like to help support this festival and jazz in Baltimore should reach out. Contact the BJA at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss different levels of participation, or to volunteer to help out at the festival.
The Baltimore Jazz Alliance continues to serve the local jazz community through all those and many other efforts, funded in part by membership dues and newsletter advertisements, with additional support from Baltimore Office of Promotion and the Arts, as well as individual and corporate donors. For more information, visit https://baltimorejazz.com.