It is now the most important Jazzfest in New York and for its 14th edition, the Winter Jazzfest extends a bit and will run January 10th to 17th. The main ingredient will be the Marathon weekend again, to be held on numerous stages throughout downtown Manhattan, mainly in the Village. I have seen tons of unforgettable acts over the past years and it always gives you the best overview of what’s going on in the world of Jazz and beyond.
Opening the festivities next year, Gilles Peterson will host a British Jazz Showcase featuring Nubya Garcia, Oscar Jerome, Yazz Ahmed and The Comet Is Coming with saxophonist Shabaka Hutchings (January 10th). Neo-Soul, Funk and Art Rock is the name of the game for the second night (January 11th) when José James will explore the music of Bill Withers. Also on tap, Knower and My Brightest Diamond.
After the marathon weekend, saxophonist Ravi Coltrane will focus on the music of his mother, Alice Coltrane, in a program called Universal Consciousness: Melodic Meditations of Alice Coltrane (January 14th at Le Poisson Rouge). Outstanding pianist, composer, and educator Geri Allen, who passed away earlier this year shortly after her 60th birthday, is honored with a very special and significant evening under the direction of Terri Lyne Carrington. So far, among the confirmed artists celebrating Geri are Dianne Reeves, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Angela Davis, Jack DeJohnette, Jeff “Tain” Watts, Esperanza Spalding, Ingrid Jensen, Mino Cinelu, Vijay Iyer, and Tia Fuller (January 15th).
On January 16th, 2018 Artist-In-Residence Nicole Mitchell will present Mandorla Awakening II: Emerging Worlds, based on a science fiction narrative she created to ask the question: “What would a truly egalitarian world look like, with advanced technology existing in harmony with nature?” Dr. Tyshawn Sorey will open the night with a solo percussion and synthesizer set. And finally, the festival concludes with art-rock group Deerhoof coming together with legendary trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith (January 17th).
Expect more artists to be confirmed soon, including those for the two marathon nights. More info right here: http://www.winterjazzfest.com