Photo Gallery: The Newport Jazz Festival 2015 by John Abbott

Intimate offstage portraits of the festival's key performers

Christian McBride, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Bria Skonberg, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Jon Batiste and Joey Alexander, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Jon Faddis and son Tyler, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Christian Sands, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Aaron Diehl Trio, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Kate McGarry, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Fred Hersch, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Arturo O'Farrill, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Igor Butman and Alex Sipiagin, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Ari Hoenig, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Scott Robinson, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Tom Harrell, 2015 Newport Jazz Festival
Lisa Hilton, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Jack DeJohnette, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Irvin Mayfield, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Sam Harris, Ambrose Akinmusire and Justin Brown, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Wayne Escoffery, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Gerald Clayton, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Ben Sidran and James Carter, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Billy Childs, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Mike Stern, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Emmet Cohen - finalist for Cole Porter Fellowship
Emmet Cohen, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Jonathan Finlayson, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Allan Harris, Newport Jazz Festival 2015
Fred Hersch, Newport Jazz Festival 2015

My first visit to the wonderful Newport Jazz Festival was 25 years ago. I spent the early years mainly photographing musicians performing onstage and congregating backstage. But for three beautiful days this summer, for the second year in a row, I was able to shoot portraits of nearly three dozen musicians in the dilapidated but alluring rooms near the Quad Stage. There were many highlights…

On Friday, during our brief session, Jon Faddis and his young son Tyler performed the call-and-response intro to Dizzy Gillespie’s “Swing Low, Sweet Cadillac.” On Saturday, I photographed a random and exciting meeting between two young and extremely talented musicians, Jonathan Batiste (age 28) and Joey Alexander (age 12). On Sunday, I met and photographed one of my favorite pianists, Fred Hersch, for the first time. We discussed everything from Fred’s fascination and inspired understanding of photography to Ella Fitzgerald’s photo session with one of my heroes, William Claxton. I can’t wait until next year!