There will be dancing in the streets again in Gibsons during the 19th annual Gibsons Landing Jazz Festival, June 20 to 22 — and a lot of music as well, from jazz favourites by Definitely Diva, a local trio of entertaining vocalists, to hard core jazz from the Brad Turner Quartet.
Linda Williams, who has worked with the festival for 18 of those years, is excited by a few new aspects this year, particularly the Daniel Brubeck Quartet.
“He contacted me when he moved here,” she said, “and he had heard about the jazz festival. I said, ‘well, you’ve got the right name for it’ and he replied that Dave Brubeck was his father.”
Reached at his new Sunshine Coast home, Brubeck told Coast Reporter that his June 20 show will be a musical tribute to his father, the legendary pianist/composer, and to his mother, who was a gifted lyricist and known in the industry as a magnificent manager.
“She took jazz out of the clubs and put it into concert halls,” he said. Last March Daniel took the stage at New York’s prestigious Lincoln Center in an event that showcased new, talented musicians performing his parents’ music. Direct from the Lincoln Center to the Heritage Playhouse, Brubeck is in concert on Friday, June 20, at 8 p.m. Tickets are $25.
The audience gets a warm-up during Jazz Week, June 14 to 19, at local restaurants and gathering places. Two of Martini Madness perform at the Gibsons Library on Saturday, June 14, at 12:30 p.m.; Boomers Burger Bar features Ken Dalgleish, vocalist Wanda Nowicki and Boyd Norman on Saturday evening at 7 p.m. On Sunday, June 15, at 2 p.m. the Gibsons Public Art Gallery hosts a new line-up from the Steve Giltrow Quartet. Giltrow on guitar is joined by Jon Bently on bass/sax, Kristian Braathen on drums and long-time jazz festival supporter Ken Grunenberg on sax.
Verna Chan and her quartet play at the Blackfish Pub on Tuesday, June 17, while Karen Graves and Blair Lewis liven up Sitas Spag & Suds on Wednesday. Pianist Luci Herder is back at her favourite place, Leo’s Tapas, on Thursday. Reservations are necessary for the restaurant gigs. Others are free or by donation.
Williams is also happy about the new stage that the non-profit society will use. Patrick Tasci has invested in an aluminum truss, sturdy, mobile stage for Coast events. It will be situated on Gower Point Road, closer this year to local businesses. The street will be closed all day Saturday, June 21, from Winn Road to the five corners.
Also appearing at the Saturday afternoon event is the roving Orkestar Slivovica Balkan Band, a collection of instruments and wild eastern European tunes. Budge Schachte of Van Django has moved to the Coast, and he brings his gypsy jazz to the mix along with one of the best harmonica players, Keith Bennett. The Saturday main street event closes at 5 p.m. with the world music of energetic Zimbamoto.
For more dancing, buy tickets to the Saturday night dance at Roberts Creek Hall, always a sell-out, that features a new-to-the-Coast band this year. Just the Funk is an eight-piece Motown, soul, R & B and funk dance band.
For a more mellow Saturday evening, stop in for a burger at Boomers and hear the Jazz Group of Seven at 6:30 or buy a ticket to More Jazz in June at 8 p.m. at St. Bart’s Church. It’s a super line up, organized by Nikki Weber, of Jacqueline Allen and Wendy Hibberd on vocals, Michael Creber on piano, Boyd Norman on bass and Barry Taylor on drums. Special guests are four guys with style: Sh-Boom. Sunday morning brunch at Leo’s features Giltrow accompanying vocalist Laura Crema.
Can’t afford tickets? Many of the events are free including Sunday, June 22, afternoon music in Winegarden Park. The Creek Big Band opens followed by a dynamic collaboration of Katherine Penfold on vocals, Miles Black on keyboard and Jodi Proznick on bass. No festival would be complete without one of Williams’ favourite performers, Celso Machado. “There’s something that Celso has that’s a connection with the audience,” she said. “We’re always looking for that contact high from a performer.”
The final event, Jazz Vespers at St. Bart’s Church at 5:30 on June 22, features singer Brenda Nestegaard Paul accompanied by Dalgleish and Norman.
Tickets for events are available at the usual outlets, and this year you can also buy them online. Go to www.coastjazz.com and click on the link for tickets.
© Coast Reporter