Montreal Jazz Fest returns this June 29-July 9 with its expectedly stellar lineup of the hippest jazz (and non-jazz) acts on the planet. While the 350 free outdoor shows have yet to be sorted out in full, the indoor acts are lined up and ready to play. Be prepared to drop anywhere from $16.50 to $149.50 on the following sheltered gigs:
Let’s begin before the beginning with the pre-opening festival concerts: Brad Mehldau (pictured), B.B. King and Bireli Lagrene with Richard Galliano will perform at separate venues on June 28.
Lagrene’s matchless versatility will be showcased at four additional concerts kicking off on June 29 with his Django-ian New Gipsy Project. Also performing on the 29th are the John Pizzarelli Big Band saluting the Chairman of the Board, the Ravi Coltrane Quartet and relentless avant-gardist John Zorn. A free “mega-show” featuring N’awlins’ Neville Brothers is also scheduled for the 29th.
June 30 features Tony Bennett and Pharoah Sanders and July 1 boasts Yusef Lateef, blueswoman extraordinaire Etta James and Wayne Shorter.
On July 2-July 3, classical pianist Christopher O’Riley will one-up Brad Mehldau with an entire program of Radiohead interpretations. Kenny Garrett and the McCoy Tyner Septet also perform on July 2.
Fans of Seu Jorge’s Jobim-style David Bowie covers can check out the Brazilian samba-popper on July 3, along with endlessly buzzed-about new schoolers Jamie Cullum and the Bad Plus. Elvis Costello and Allen Toussaint will also appear on that date in support of their upcoming Verve Forecast release The River in Reverse.
Take a breather to celebrate American independence in French-speaking Canada on July 4, then hit up the ATM to snag tickets for the Paul Simon and Gonzalo Rubalcaba shows on July 5.
July 6’s program includes guitarist Pat Martino (who recently released an outstanding Wes Montgomery tribute record on Blue Note), Baptiste Trotignon and post-rockers The Bell Orchestre. Bonnie Raitt and Keb’ Mo’ will share one big league blues bill on July 7, and the following day pulls out all the stops: the Dave Brubeck Quartet, Joe Lovano, Don Byron’s Ivey-Divey Trio, free jazzer Dom Minasi and The Young and the Restless guest star Chris Botti will all perform on July 8. (Also on the eighth, fans of post-Kottke/Fahey fingerstyle guitar virtuosity will want to check out Kaki King, opening for feminist folk-punker Ani Difranco). On July 9, Tex-Mex Americana hipsters Calexico join up with Mariachis Luiz de Luna.
For tickets, schedules and other info, visit montrealjazzfest.com.Originally Published