Jason Moran & Bandwagon Host Election Night Jam in DC

Pianist and other artists to perform at the Kennedy Center on November 6

Jason Moran performs with the Bandwagon at the 2010 Rosslyn Jazz Festival
Jason Moran

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Jason Moran and the Bandwagon will perform at the Kennedy Center’s Election Night Jam on November 6, 2012, along with guitarist Zan McLeod, fiddler Tad Marks, the Washington National Opera Domingo-Cafritz Young Artists and other special guests.

As the Kennedy Center’s Artistic Advisor for Jazz, Jason Moran’s vision for this performance focused on capturing the essence of America as a country, according to Kevin Struthers, the Kennedy Center’s director of jazz programming. “He asked, ‘What does America sound like?’ And what better time to think about what America sounds like?” explained Struthers.

Moran and his trio, the Bandwagon, represent the prominent jazz component of the night. But Moran also wanted to explore other American flavors, such as Aaron Copeland’s compositions which will be performed by the WNO Domingo-Cafritz Young Artists, and a folk sound indigenous to the US with Zan McLeod and Tad Marks. The night will also feature a sing-along portion of national favorites like “God Bless America” and the “Star-Spangled Banner.”

A graduate of New York’s Manhattan School of Music and a 2010 recipient of the MacArthur Foundation fellowship, Moran has won wide acclaim for his compositions which combine jazz with unique elements like classical music and hip hop. During the Newport Jazz Festival in August, he talked to JazzTimes about his recent professional milestones.

Election Night Jam is one of the Kennedy Center’s 365 free yearly performances, and the first hour will be broadcast online as part of the daily Millennium Stage series. The event will feature large-screen monitoring of the election results.