09/04/11 By Vincent Sylvain
Stephanie Jordan to headline nola Downtown Music and Arts Festival in New Orleans
Cutting Edge Music Business Conference and Roots Music Gathering
Internationally acclaimed New Orleans’ jazz vocalist Stephanie Jordan and her Big Band will perform at 6:00 pm on Friday, September 23, 2011 in Lafayette Square at the “nola Downtown Music and Arts Festival” as part of this year’s 19th Annual Cutting Edge CE (formerly the Cutting Edge Music Business Conference and Roots Music Gathering) conference in New Orleans. The Stephanie Jordan Big Band will fill Lafayette Square with her big band sound as she continues her signature trademark of singing jazz standards.
The nola Downtown Music and Arts Festival takes place September 23 – 24, 2011 in Lafayette Square while the conference which runs from September 21 – 24 is being held at the Pan American Conference and Media Center on Poydras and St. Charles Avenue.
Stephanie Jordan’s recent concert with the Chicago Jazz Ensemble at the Harris Theater where she was a last minute replacement for four-time Grammy nominee Ledisi led Chicago Tribune’s leading art critic Howard Reich to proclaim, “The woman can sing and indisputably knows how to reach out across the footlights . . . Jordan showed ample voice, bringing heft to music of the Gershwins and Cole Porter without pushing volume levels. Clearly she values plush sound and knows how to produce it.”
Music critic James Walker added, “Stephanie Jordan . . . stepped in and simply mesmerized the near capacity Harris Theater crowd with a sparkling performance that surely put her in good stead with the astute Chicago audience. . . . She was at ease from her opening medley of "On A Clear Day," "I'm Beginning To See The Light" and "Come Fly With Me." Her infectious smile and charisma was ever present and she had this crowd on the edge of their seat until she left the stage several hours later singing "From This Moment On."
A member of New Orleans' renowned Jordan Family of Jazz, Stephanie Jordan is consistently praised for her poise, elegance, and soulful articulation. She draws frequent comparisons to her mentor—the legendary jazz chanteuse Shirley Horn—as well as Abbey Lincoln, and Carmen McRae. Critics have also likened Ms. Jordan to jazz stars Diana Krall and Nancy Wilson.
Most recently, Stephanie Jordan just concluded tapping a soundtrack for Lee Daniels’ upcoming production of “The Paperboy” which co-stars Matthew McConaughey and Nicole Kidman among others. Jordan is in production of a tribute CD to Lena Horne which is scheduled for release on Valentine Day 2012.
Jordan has performed around the globe on the same stages as Branford Marsalis, Jonathan Dubose, Roy Ayres, Yolanda Adams, Cassandra Wilson, Elvis Costello, Diana Krall, and Norah Jones. She enthralled the packed house and a nationally televised PBS NPR audience of millions during the Jazz at Lincoln Center's Higher Ground Hurricane Relief benefit concert for victims of Hurricane Katrina, and as a ‘Jazz Ambassadors’ on a European Tour sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and Jazz at Lincoln Center. Jordan has also has been featured live on NPR's Talk of the Nation as well as performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington, DC.
Jordan performed at the private celebration ‘Oprah Winfrey and Friends of Susan Taylor’ at New York City's ESPACE in honor of Susan Taylor's 37 years of service to Essence magazine. Jordan was invited specifically to sing Susan’s favorite jazz tune, Here’s to Life. Jordan has turned the tune most identified with her mentor Shirley Horn into her signature song.
The “nola Downtown Music and Arts Festival” will feature local, national, and international acts from places as far as Canada, London, and Guadeloupe featuring various genre of music; including showcase performances from the Brass-A-Holics “Gogo Brass Funk” Band; Chubby Carrier and The Bayou Swamp Band (Zyedeco); Grand Baton (Creole Rock); Frankie Ford & friends (Indie Rock); One Vision One Voice (School Funk); Gospel Soul Children (Gospel); Rebel Society (Latin Rock); Austin Urban Rhythm and Blues Revue; Fire Bug (Indie Rock); Black Market Butchers (Rock); Tanya Boutte (Jazz/R&B); Marlon Jordan (Jazz); and Davis “The Real DJ Davis” Rogan (New Orleans Jazz Funk) whom HBO writer producer David Simon based a character on for the HBO Treme series.
“As we approach our 20th year the Cutting Edge opens its new chapter with a new event and new collaborations. We anticipate the “nola Downtown Music and Arts Festival” to become the signature event of Downtown New Orleans, particularly for the young professionals who work and live downtown” says lead festival producer Eric Cager. Co-organizer Vincent Sylvain adds, “Not since Tulane University was downtown has New Orleans’ CBD had such a cultural mix of commercial, residential and artistic scenes. From the art, music and culture . . . , “Downtown New Orleans is the Place to Work, Live and Enjoy! That’s what makes this festival a natural.”
The Cutting Edge brings together music industry personnel from across the country; including ASCAP and BMI. Panels consist of “crash courses” and “hot topic” which provide proficiency within the music and film industry. The sessions also includes the NewWorks Showcase for new and emerging artists seeking special exposure to record executives, booking agents, managers and the media. Showcases are arranged in the evening at nightclubs and other venues. The Cutting Edge showcases all styles of music.
This year, Cutting Edge has also collaborated with events produced by the New Orleans Actors Resource Center and the New Orleans Songwriters Festival which will take place during the conference. Environmentally-conscious as well, the festival will feature some of the latest innovative green technology as well as some green vendors and eco-friendly service demonstrations.
The nola Downtown Music and Arts Festival, will span three days with the epicenter of activities being across from Gallier Hall in Lafayette Square. The festival will feature:
•Popular music acts from international and local music scene.
•Energy/Green efficient lifestyle products demonstration.
•Entertainment entities featured at the Business Opportunity Expo.
•24 Hrs of Films presented Downtown.
•Cutting Edge Lounge Tour 2011 at Downtown nightspots.
nola Downtown Music and Arts Festival
Thursday, September 22
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm Roots of Music Fundraiser (Howlin' Wolf)
9:00 pm - 1:00 am Lounge Tour Begins
Friday, September 23
4:00 pm - 7:30 pm Music in the Square (Lafayette Square)
5:00 pm - 24 Hrs of Films Begin (Lafayette Square)
9:00 pm - 2:00 am Lounge Tour
Saturday, September 24
10:00 am - 5:00 pm Arts Market (Lafayette Square)
11:00 am - 5:00 pm Industry Expo (Lafayette Square)
11:00 am - 7:30 pm Music in the Square (Lafayette Square)
Lounge Tour Musical Groups:
a.levy (New Orleans); Alex Berger (London); Andrea Bush (New Orleans); Andy Macintyre (Pflugerville); Anita Maj (London); Black Magnolia (Harahan); Black Market Butchers (New Orleans); Brass-A-Holics "Gogo Brass Funk" Band (New Orleans); Charlie Wooton Band (Lafayette); Chubby Carrier and The Bayou Swamp Band (Lafayette); Copper Box (Oshkosh); Davis Rogan (New Orleans); Dixie Rose (Baton Rouge); Dr Drew (New Orleans); Drastik (Austin); Frankie Ford & friends (New Orleans); Fire Bug (Los Angeles); Fluid (Hammond); Grand Baton (Guadeloupe); GG & Friends (Atlanta); Gospel Soul Children (New Orleans); Henry Turner and the Flavor Band (Baton Rouge); Hi-Lyfe Band (Slidell); Hollywood Al (Houston); HOMEMADESOUL (Niceville); Human Groove Hormone (Denton); Green Demons (Lafayette); International O (Houston); Jeremiah Meyer (Helena); Jill Jackson (London); Joanna's Band (Tyler); Jonte' L Thomas (New Orleans); Joshua Kagler & HPC (New Orleans); Kellin Watson (Black Mountain); Kevin West (Charleston); Keith Lewis Blues Revue (New Orleans); LaTosha Brown (Atlanta); Liz Lawrence (London); Loaded Gun (Miami); Loretta Toussant (New Orleans); Mac Graham (Ontario); Marlon Jordan (New Orleans); Matrixx of Domination (Douglasville); Menace (Hammond); Mr Hip Hop (Marrero); OLGA (New Orleans); Neckbone (Austin); One Vision One Voice (New Orleans); Rain (Austin); Rebel Society (Miami); Saul Paul (Austin); Shower Family Singers (New Orleans); Sons of Bithches (New Orleans); Soulscript (Madisonville); Spider (New Orleans); Sue Ford (New Orleans) T Double (Austin); Tanya Boutte (New Orleans); Ter'ell Shahid (Austin); Tiffany Shea (Nashville); The Jones Sisters (New Orleans); The Patrick Godbey Band (New Orleans); The UnNaturals (New Orleans); Tiger On The Prowl w/Fat Boy South (Lafayette); Tom Vollman (Milwaukee); Tony Moore (London); Tonya Boyd-Cannon & SoDivine (New Orleans) Will Bassett (New Orleans); and ZDL & PhaZe (New Orleans).
Cutting Edge is produced by the New Orleans based non-profit organization Music Business Institute (MBI).
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