All About Jazz

Home » Articles » Live Reviews

Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...


2003 JVC Jazz Festival: A Look Ahead

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
I was playing the piano and I wasn't very good and I found out I had a better head for organizing and I kept thinking of things to do and one thing followed another and we did it... —George Wein, CEO Festival Productions
2003 JVC Jazz Festival
New York
June 15-28

George Wein , "the grandfather of jazz festivals," announced this year's JVC Jazz Festival lineup with a little help from his friends. Bill Cosby was smiling brightly as this American icon threw his support behind the American art form of jazz.

The festival is held every year at Manhattan's Supper Club on the upper westside, so we hopped a New Haven Line train down to Grand Central Station to catch the event. Always presented in grande style with a fine food spread and this year entertainment by the Rodriguez Brothers, the press conference is a chance to meet and greet the old guard of jazz. (Hats off to the behind-the-scenes Superman Charles Bourgeois of Festival Productions, Inc.)

Milling about in the crowd of jazzoids was Lew Tabackin , Chico Hamilton , Illinois Jacquet...I heard Deborah Harry (Blondie) was there too. Jazz Journalist Masters Howard Mandel, Jeff Levenson and Ira Gitler soaked up the good vibes. Mary Fiance Fuss from Jazz At Lincoln Center brightened up the place. Good people and a good time.

But most of all, it's a pleasure every year to shake hands with the man himself, George Wein. He started this whole jazz festival thing back in 1954 at Newport, Rhode Island. He took this evening to thank stalwart sponsor JVC, which has thrown its support behind the jazz festival for 20 years. Their partership with George Wein is a true friendship. Not just business. Family.

"It just happened. And I mean that," George explained to me of his lifelong career promoting jazz music. "I was playing the piano and I wasn't very good and I found out I had a better head for organizing and I kept thinking of things to do and one thing followed another and we did it," he said with a smile.

Wein also took this evening to announce the release of his new book Myself Among Others. As he puts it, "It was a lot of work. I wrote a book about my life, which is an ego trip to start with, but while you're doing it, it's not an ego trip, it's alot of hard work. But alot of people were saying I should write a book and I finally gave in and did it. It's fun. You look back at what you've done and you're motivations and why you did things...I think people will find it interesting...jazz fans will...and I think fans of the Newport Folk Festival and Kool Jazz Festival...many kinds of music are involved. I think it will have interest to alot of people."

Just imagine the folks George Wein has shared time with. His work was a labor of love. "Just knowing all the great people I know. It was a privilege to work with them. From Miles Davis to Bob Dylan to Luciano Pavorotti," George smiles wisely. "Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holiday, Art Tatum, Pete Seeger, Aretha Frankin and so many people, all aspects of music. Even a few rock n' roll groups like Led Zeppelin." Rock On George! (For more information on George Wein's book Myself Among Others, contact: [email protected]) —>

And Wein has made lifelong friends who come to his support when called. Big friends like Bill Cosby. Cornering Mr. Cosby for a brief minute gave us a glimpse into the entertainment giant's joys. "I love the music. There's no other music that I prefer. I will listen to other music. I will enjoy certain things. But nothing makes the spirit and the soul dance like this umbrella of jazz," Cosby assured us.

Is jazz the one true American art form? "Well, I don't know. I listen to some Country/Western and then I hear Blues... there's alot."

What incident from yesteryear brings a smile to your face? "I think it was at Birdland. And John Coltrane came from the kitchen while I was imitating him with my mouth. And he came from the kitchen and started playing on the stage...and I very intelligently... got off."

Oh yeah, about the 2003 JVC Jazz Festival New York lineup... where to start? Dave Brubeck, Herbie Hancock , Wayne Shorter , Cassandra Wilson, Chick Corea , Ornette Coleman, The Crusaders.

This year's JVC Jazz Festival hits the big cities of New York, Newport (RI), Miami Beach, Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay area, Chicago, Winter Park (CO), Paris, The Hague and Warsaw.

Go to and .

Photo Credit
Annie Taylor Mecca


comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read 2018 Hope College Jazz Organ Summit Live Reviews
2018 Hope College Jazz Organ Summit
by C. Andrew Hovan
Published: March 23, 2018
Read Vlatko Stefanovski's performance at the Macedonian Philharmonic Orchestra's Concert Hall 2018 Live Reviews
Vlatko Stefanovski's performance at the Macedonian...
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: March 23, 2018
Read Noa Fort at Cornelia Street Café Live Reviews
Noa Fort at Cornelia Street Café
by Tyran Grillo
Published: March 21, 2018
Read Cologne Open 2018 Live Reviews
Cologne Open 2018
by Henning Bolte
Published: March 21, 2018
Read Jon Faddis at The Wheel Live Reviews
Jon Faddis at The Wheel
by Mark Sullivan
Published: March 20, 2018
Read Dixie Dregs at Lincoln Theatre Live Reviews
Dixie Dregs at Lincoln Theatre
by Eric Thiessen
Published: March 18, 2018
Read "Pharoah Sanders at SFJAZZ" Live Reviews Pharoah Sanders at SFJAZZ
by Harry S. Pariser
Published: October 5, 2017
Read "Mike Westbrook at Bury St. Edmunds Festival" Live Reviews Mike Westbrook at Bury St. Edmunds Festival
by Duncan Heining
Published: June 14, 2017
Read "Ambrose Akinmusire at SFJAZZ" Live Reviews Ambrose Akinmusire at SFJAZZ
by Harry S. Pariser
Published: July 3, 2017
Read "Garana Jazz Festival 2017" Live Reviews Garana Jazz Festival 2017
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: July 20, 2017
Read "Anat Cohen at Davidson College" Live Reviews Anat Cohen at Davidson College
by Perry Tannenbaum
Published: April 27, 2017
Read "Antonio Sanchez Group at Jazz Standard" Live Reviews Antonio Sanchez Group at Jazz Standard
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 24, 2017