Chicago's vast and diverse music scene get new life every summer through the free festivals located in the city's park district. Between Millennium Park and Grant Park and many more, music lovers can hear great live music from some of the best acts in the country all summer long. It all seems to culminate with the Chicago Jazz Festival (August 29-September 1) every Labor Day weekend. Lucky for all of us, the amazing line-up, featuring some of Jazz's living legends, was just announced. I'll tell you who you can't miss.
Charles Lloyd and Friends, Featuring Bill Frisell (Friday, August 30, 9-10pm at the Pritzker Pavilion)
Charles Lloyd is truly a living legend in the jazz world, influencing a huge jazz fanbase for more than 50 years. In his more than 30 albums, Lloyd has crafted a sound that combines his skill at the tenor saxophone and flute, and the raw emotion and rhythmic intricacies of jazz. When joined by Bill Frisell, the legendary guitarist and composer, Lloyd's act is one to see.
Brilliant jazz pianist and composer Jason Moran showcases his trademark form of avant-garde jazz. Receiving many awards for his music, Moran, although relatively young, has played with some of the greats, like Charles Lloyd. His version of jazz is accessible and soothing, while maintaining some of the finest technique in the industry.
Donald Harrison and The Congo Square Nation with Special Guest Willie Pickens (Sunday, September 1, 8:45-10pm at the Pritzker Pavilion)
Known as "The King of Nouveau Swing," Donald Harrison is a saxophonist, composer, rapper, and truly a genre-hopping master. He uses all of these influences to great a one-of-a-kind sound that captivates listeners. He teams up with Chicago native pianist, Willie Pickens for what is sure to be a mind-blowing set.
Winner of a 2013 Grammy award, Glaspers unique blend of jazz, hip-hop, and R&B has catapulted him to the top of the modern jazz scene. His piano playing is exciting and beautiful, with a raw quality that keeps things edgy and interesting. Expert timing and beautiful composition make Glasper a must see act.
Another master of genre-jumping, Hamid Drake and his group have created a sound all their own by using their favorite elements from around the world. Combining jazz and reggae rhythms with African drum sounds, beat boxing, and intricate Latin runs, the group seems to master all of them, creating a cohesive, rich, beautiful, and interesting sound that will capture the ears of all festival-goers.
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