Renowned jazz artists from around the world bring their flare and flavor to walton arts center.
Music styles from electric guitars to hard bop piano with influences from California to Cuba and beyond, Starr Theater hosts an intersection of world-famous jazz talent in an intimate, cabaret setting.
George Brooks' ASPADA
Led by saxophonist and composer George Brooks, ASPADA's world-renowned musicians weave a global tapestry by drawing on the musical traditions of India, Africa, Europe and America. The group includes South Indian virtuoso percussionist, Selvaganesh and global bass master, Kai Eckhardt, who together create the rhythmic foundation that supports the group’s creative vision. Osam Ezzeldin, a leading jazz musician in North Africa, rounds out the quartet on the keyboard.
Bristling with East meets West polytonality and rhythmic intrigue, ASPADA provides a rare opportunity to observe musicians from diverse musical backgrounds conversing in a new musical language.
” A fascinating set…Exotically lyrical…gracefully bridges seemingly antithetical disciplines. “ -Billboard Magazine Critics Choice
The John Patitucci Electric Guitar Quarter
Fifteen-time Grammy® nominee and two time Grammy Award-winner, Joh Patitucci, delivers the eclectic tastes that have pushed him to explore various genres as both a musician and a composer. His work with jazz luminaries, such as Herbie Hancock, Wayne Shorter and McCoy Turner have skyrocketed his first solo recording to the top of the Billboard Jazz charts. Widely regarded as on of the world’s greatest bassists, Patitucci’s latest band finds fresh inspiration in his love of funk and jazz while utilizing two electric guitarists, Adam Rogers and Steve Cardenas, as well as virtuoso Brian Blade on drums and John on his signature electric bass.
Alfredo Rodriguez and Pedrito Martinez Duo
Over the past decade pianist Alfredo Rodríguez went from being a young, local Cuban artist to being discovered by Quincy Jones, to becoming a globally recognized Grammy®-nominee with three critically acclaimed albums to his name.
Paired with Alfredo is three-time winner of the "Percussionist of the Year" by the Jazz Journalist Association, Pedrito Martinez. Helping to expose the rich musical history of Cuba to a wider audience, Pedrito has recorded or performed with Wynton Marsalis, Paul Simon, Bruce Springsteen and Sting, among others. As a founding member of the highly successful Afro-Cuban/Afro-Beat band, Yerba Buena.
Together, these two artists are leading the new wave of Cuban jazz music – with a seductive, buoyant, powerful sound that will leave you wanting more.
Peter Bernstein, Larry Goldings and Bill Stewart Trio
In the mid 1990s, The New York Times described Larry Goldings, Peter Bernstein and Bill Stewart as "the best organ trio of the last decade." The trio, which has now been together for more than 20 years, has been recognized for charting new ground, with its synergistic playing, yet thoughtful music.
Drawing mainly on jazz standards, and a few original pieces, they re-imagine the organ jazz trio in a quiet, sensual and grooving presentation. The respect these musicians have for one another comes through in the subtle and intricate manner of their musical conversation on stage. Peter’s warm, feather-light touch and fluid improvisation with Larry Goldings’ warm hum, and Bill Stewart’s polyrhythmic and melodic focus, create a vivid combination of synergistic playing that lets each soloist float across the tunes.
Benny Green Trio with Veronica Swift
Benny Green holds the history of jazz at his fingertips. With decades of experience playing with no less than the most celebrated artists of the last half century, it’s no wonder Green has been hailed as perhaps the most exciting hard-swinging, hard-bop pianist of his time. Benny Green is a member of the prestigious, Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers. A jazz messenger, a very personal experience for Green, places him squarely as a rare living legacy within the lineage of the hard bop jazz medium.
Bringing powerhouse vocals to the trio's performance, 23-year old Veronica Swift is recognized around the country as one of the top young jazz singers on the scene. An adept lyrical interpreter with tremendous tonal command, Swift has the keen ability to make everything she touches her own. Veronica finished her undergraduate degree (BM in Jazz Voice) at the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami in December 2016, where she was a full scholarship student. It was after that that she moved to New York City, where she was almost immediately started performing every Saturday night at the legendary Birdland Jazz Club, a gig she continues to maintain when she isn't on the road.
"It’s not often you hear one so young interpret the sounds of a seasoned jazz performer and make everything she touches her own [...] that’s Veronica Swift!" -Theater Pizzazz