Central PA Friends of Jazz will kick off its 2011 fall season with THREE outstanding performances at the SHERATON HOTEL on Lindle Road in Harrisburg (formerly the Marriott Hotel).

The season opens on Sunday September 25th with a CD Release Party featuring the Terell Stafford Quintet as they ‘Play the Music of Billy Strayhorn.’

Terell Stafford

The JazzTimes says of the trumpeter’s latest CD (This Side of Strayhorn), “…the extraordinary trumpeter and flugelhornist Terell Stafford shines the light back on Strayhorn,” and calls the recording a “remarkable composing gift” as he refers to Stafford’s “startling interpretative talent.”

Stafford has been called “one of the great players of our time” by the legendary jazz pianist McCoy Tyner.

The Sunday, October 23rd concert welcomes the Bobby Watson Quintet.

Bobby Watson

The saxophonist’s latest CD “The Gates BBQ Suite” (so named in honor of Watson’s grandparents), has been called a “joyous, groove-based sensibility of the album hints that the compositions were designed by a man familiar with the music of Donald Byrd and Ramsey Lewis.”

Lew Tabackin

The Lew Tabackin Trio will be featured on Sunday, November 20th. Flutist and saxophonist Tabackin has won First Place, Flute, Swing Journal Reader’s Poll for four consecutive years as well as Down Beat International Critics Poll 2010 – Flute. Reviewers describe Tabackin’s performances as “distinctive” with “purposeful fervor.”

Tickets for each concert can be purchased via the website (www.cpfj.org) or purchased at the door on the day of the concert. Doors open at 4:30pm. For more information call 717.540.1010 or send a question or comment via email to info@cpfj.org.

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Etienne Charles

CPFJ will feature the Etienne Charles Trio on Sunday, March 20th at 5pm at the Hilton Harrisburg.

As a precursor, BlogTalkRadio’s “Livin’ the Dream! with JBlair Brown” will interview Charles for this upcoming concert. The show’s host, Judith Brown, is also the publicist for CPFJ and says, “It’s a natural solution to getting the word out there. Of course, we (CPFJ) also use traditional means – such as press releases, ads and social media – to publicize our events. But adding my show to the mix is definitely an added benefit.”

Other CPFJ-associated artists interviewed on “Livin’ the Dream!” include Aaron Goldberg (who performed at CPFJ’s February Sunday concert) and Amy Banks (a friend and former board member of CPFJ).

To hear Etienne Charles’ interview LIVE, click here on Friday, Mar 18th at 2pm, where you’ll also be able to participate in the chat session during the interview.

You can also listen on your phone by dialing 347-539-5805.


CPFJ Presents jazz pianist Aaron Goldberg

The Central Pennsylvania Friends of Jazz (CPFJ) rolls into 2011 by announcing the appearance of the Aaron Goldberg Trio on Sunday, February 20, 2011 at 5pm at the Hilton Harrisburg, Second Floor Ballroom, One North Second Street, Harrisburg, PA.

Aaron Goldberg was born in Boston in 1974. He began studying piano at seven. By 17 he was at the New School for Jazz. Then he enrolled at Harvard where he won the International Association of Jazz Educators’ Clifford Brown/Stan Getz Fellowship and was a member of Betty Carter’s “Jazz Ahead” Program.

After graduating from Harvard, Aaron went to NYC and quickly became an in-demand sideman for the likes of Wynton Marsalis, Joshua Redman and Madeline Peyroux.

He is faculty member at the New School and a clinician at conservatories and universities around the world.
His most recent release is “Home,” which appeared on both DownBeat’s and JazzTimes’ “Best Releases of 2010” lists.

“He’s versatile and impressive, and he swings hard.” — New York Times

“A talented artist whose calling card is unadorned musicianship.” — Billboard

Joining Goldberg will be noted bassist Omer Avital and equally talented drummer Eric Harland. Avital comes straight from his gig in Italy where he performed with Jason Lindner and featured Jeff Ballard on drums. Harland, who was discovered by Wynton Marsalis during a high school event, went on to the Manhattan School of Music on a full scholarship. He comes to CPFJ following the concert event The Development of Eric Harland.

Ticket prices for concerts are: General Adult Admission – $28
General Student Admission – $10
CPFJ Adult Member – $20
CPFJ Student Member – $5
Children under 12 are always admitted free!

CPFJ Sponsor and Corporate Members receive their tickets in the U.S. mail.

Tickets may be purchased at http://www.cpfj.org or at the door after 4:30 pm on the day of the concert or by visiting http://www.cpfj.org.


Aaron Goldberg will be featured on an upcoming segment of BlogTalkRadio’s “Livin’ the Dream! with JBlair Brown” on Wed, February 9th at 2pm EST.

To hear the show LIVE, simply click here on that date and time, and download the streaming show OR dial in from your phone to (347) 539-5805. If you’d like to ask Aaron a question ON THE AIR, simply follow the operator’s instructions once you dial in.

“Livin’ the Dream! with JBlair Brown” is a weekly broadcast out of Harrisburg, PA. The Goldberg interview is the program’s first to feature upcoming jazz performers who will appear in and around Central PA. To be considered for an upcoming interview, please contact Judith at jbfreelancewriter@yahoo.com.


BEST DATE EVER!

BEST DATE EVER!

On March 28th, CPFJ had the honor of presenting Freddy Cole and his trio for a performance at the Hilton during CPFJ’s Sunday concert series.

The evening before, Mr. Cole and I spent a few hours together enjoying dinner at downtown restaurant. I have to admit, it was the best date ever! Mr. Cole shared lots of fond memories of his earlier days on the circuit – including many “He-couldn’t-possibly-make-this-stuff-up!”flashbacks of the Elks, Masonic Hall and the infamous Lawson’s Bar. (Having grown up in Harrisburg, I knew the stories weren’t farfetched, but rather, par for the course. They were some wild times!)

But the highlight of the evening was having my own private not-on-purpose concert with the fabulous Freddy Cole. The restaurant apparently subscribes to a Sirius jazz channel, one featuring all the jazz legends: Frank Sinatra, Nancy Wilson, Billy Eskstine, Ella Fitzgerald – and plenty others. When I tell you that Mr. Cole knew – and sang – every single song that came on that channel, I’m not exaggerating! (I still can’t believe a man 20+ years my senior recalled every word to every tune, while I have trouble remembering my middle name!)

He’s simply amazing.

Following dinner, we walked back to The Bar at the Hilton to hear Steve Rudolph at the piano. What a once-in-a-lifetime treat for all us listeners as Mr. Cole’s raspy voice accompanied Steve’s playing – totally impromptu – and pitch perfect!

It was the highlight of my evening. In fact, thus far, it’s been the highlight of my year! And definitely…

MY BEST DATE EVER!


The secret’s out. (And boy am I glad — I was about to BURST!)

It’s official: Grammy award-winning vocalist Patti Austin will be the headliner at CPFJ’s 30th Annual Jazz Festival on Saturday, June 12th at the Hilton Harrisburg!

Festivities will kick off at 5pm Thursday, June 10th with the Jazz Walk, which includes great jazz performances throughout various venues in the downtown and mid-town areas. This year’s festival is dedicated to Women in Jazz and will feature some of the finest female jazz vocalists from Harrisburg and surrounding areas during the Walk.

On Thursday, June 10th at 5pm, a hearty “Welcome” will officially begin the Jazz Festival at the Hilton Harrisburg after which time “nuttin’ but jazz” will permeate most downtown and mid-town arenas.

The show-stopping performance of the remarkable Patti Austin will highlight the festival on Saturday night in the ballroom of the Hilton.

In addition to Austin, the outstanding 15-member, all-female DIVA will perform on Friday evening! For certain, CPFJ provides the finest in jazz – and most notably during its jazz festivals; however, even WE have to admit: we pulled out all the stops for this baby, our 30th!

You’ll want to be there. Reserve your tickets now by calling (717) 540-1010 or by visiting us online at www.cpfj.org. Space is limited – and this is the festival everyone will be talking about for years to come.

Don’t say we didn’t warn ya’.