5 Can’t Miss Acts for Every Music Fan at the Xerox Rochester International Jazz Fest

Well, it’s time for another Xerox Rochester International Jazz Fest. For nine days, Gibbs Street will become Jazz Street, the East End will be bustling with people night after night, and Rochester will briefly transform into one of the premiere music destinations on the planet. The sheer amount of music that will be played within a few block radius is daunting. There’s so much to see you would need a few duplicate selves to be able to see it all. So decisions must be made. Hit that, not that. But what? Well, that’s why we’re here. Below we’ve mapped out five must see acts for every taste, including shows from the club pass series, headliners, and free shows. There’s something for everyone, so what are you ready for?

22220
Ready for What’s Next
Interested in seeing the young jazz stars before they make it big? Do you yearn to be able to say you saw them when? You’ll want to be at these sets.

Cécile McLorin Salvant
Salvant is a return performer from last year’s festival, when she mesmerized the crowd with her unique interpretations of unknown and scarcely recorded jazz and blues compositions.
June 19, 
Kilbourn Hall, 6:00pm & 10:00pm
$25 or Club Pass

Grace Kelly
At 21, she is certainly young, but she is already a 9 year veteran of the jazz scene, a graduate of Berklee College of Music, and a 3 time return act at this festival. There’s still time to get in while the iron is hot, and it is mighty hot indeed.
June 20,  Harro East Ballroom
, 5:30pm & 7:15pm
$20 or Club Pass

Joey Alexander
At 11, Alexander will be the youngest performer at this year’s festival not in a school band. The Indonesian pianist defines prodigy, and has been getting attention from the New York Times, the BBC and everyone in between.
June 20, Hatch Recital
 Hall, 5:45 pm & 7:45 pm
June 21, Lyric Theater, 4:00pm
$20 or Club Pass for either venue

Also make time for…
Jeremy Pelt Quartet
June 20,  Montage Music Hall, 6:00pm & 10:00pm
$20 or Club Pass

Katie Ernst
June 27,  Max of Eastman Place, 6:15pm & 10:00pm
$20 or Club Pass

44373
Ready for the Legendary
These are the seasoned veterans. The known quantities. It’s tough to pass up the opportunity to catch any of these jazz legends.

Diana Krall
Krall has sold more albums than any other female jazz artist of the last 30 years, establishing herself as one of the best-selling and most beloved performers of her generation, one whose recordings thus far have earned her nine gold, three platinum and seven multi-platinum albums.
June 19,  Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre, 4:00pm & 8:00pm
$55-$120

Stanley Clarke Band
If you try to argue against Stanley Clarke as the best bass player of all time, you are going to lose the argument.
June 25,  Xerox Auditorium, 6:30pm & 9:00pm
$20 or Club Pass

Steve Gadd Band
Celebrating his 70th birthday, drummer and Rochester native Steve Gadd, is another one in the argument for one of the best at his craft.
June 25,  Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre, 8:00pm
$64

Also make time for…
Joe Locke
June 22, Kilbourn Hall, 6:00pm & 10:00pm
$25 or Club Pass

Herb Alpert with Lani Hall
June 20,  Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre, 8:00pm
$33-63

29485
Ready for Adventure
If you want to be wowed, challenged and mystified, make sure you have a seat for these sets. And then when you’re still not satisfied, go see whatever is happening at the Nordic Jazz Now series.

Kneebody
Electric, eclectic; explosive, explorative; out-there, in the pocket; rocking AND rolling.
June 21,  Max of Eastman Place, 6:15pm & 10:00pm
$20 or Club Pass

Eivind Opsvik Overseas
One of the best sets I caught at the festival in 2010, this bassist-led avant-garde quintet will bend your mind into a pretzel.
June 22,  Lutheran Church
, 7:30pm & 9:30pm
$20 or Club Pass

Stephane Wrembel
You thought gypsy jazz was a thing of the past, but Wrembel will show you it might be the way of the future.
June 21, Rochester Regional Health Big Tent, 8:30pm & 10:00pm
$20 or Club Pass
June 22,  City of Rochester Jazz Street Stage, 7:30pm & 9:30pm
FREE

Also make time for…
Dave Douglas and High Risk
June 25,  Harro East Ballroom, 5:30pm & 7:15pm
$20 or Club Pass

Kurt Rosenwinkel New Quartet
June 26, Kilbourn Hall, 6:00pm & 10:00pm
$25 or Club Pass

 41167
Ready to Party
If you want to move while you listen, these are the acts that will have the crowd out of their chairs and on their feet. Don’t forget to bring your dancing shoes.

The New Mastersounds
Classic American funk a la The Meters, through the filter of four Brits.
June 19,  Harro East Ballroom, 5:30pm & 7:15pm
$20 or Club Pass

June 20, City of Rochester Jazz Street Stage
, 7:30pm & 9:30pm
FREE

Ikebe Shakedown
Another Brooklyn retro-soul band that is going to have the crowd shaking to its Afrobeat grooves.
June 26,  Montage Music Hall, 6:00pm & 10:00pm
$20 or Club Pass
June 27,  City of Rochester East Ave and Chestnut Street Stage, 5:00pm
FREE

Trombone Shorty and Orleans Avenue
He doesn’t really need any introduction to this audience, he’s played the festival so many times his band should probably change its name to East Avenue.
June 27,  City of Rochester East Ave and Chestnut Street Stage, 9:00pm
FREE

Also make time for…
The Soul Rebels
June 21,  Harro East Ballroom, 5:30pm & 7:15pm
June 22, Rochester Regional Health Big Tent, 8:30pm & 10:00pm
$20 or Club Pass for either venue

The California Honeydrops
June 26, City of Rochester Jazz Street Stage, 7:30pm & 9:30pm
FREE
June 27, Rochester Regional Health Big Tent, 8:30pm & 10:00pm
$20 or Club Pass

19620
Ready to Rock
Don’t let the name fool you. It says it’s a jazz festival, but there’s oh so much more. If you’re ready to pump your fist and bang your head, there’s a show for that.

Gary Clarke Jr.
Scorching guitar, soulful voice, heartfelt bluesy songwriting. Clarke Jr. will be bringing some new material from his forthcoming album that you won’t want to miss. Ask your friend if they have a ticket for you though, this one is sold out.
June 23,  Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre, 8:00pm

Tedeschi Trucks Band
Ex-Allman Brother Derek Trucks and his Grammy winning wife Susan Tedeschi are a well-known entity in Rochester and are rightfully considered rock royalty. Maybe that’s why this one is also sold out. Get in there if you can.
June 25,  Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre, 7:00pm

Blood Sweat and Tears with Bo Bice
One of the pioneers of blending the worlds of rock and jazz, the band now features the talented Bo Bice of American Idol fame on lead vocals.
June 20,  City of Rochester East Ave and Chestnut Street Stage, 9:00pm
FREE

Also make time for…
goodbyemotel
June 19,  Little Theater, 7:00pm & 9:15pm
$20 or Club Pass
June 20,  City of Rochester East Ave and Chestnut Street Stage, 7:00pm
FREE

Los Lonely Boys
June 26,  City of Rochester East Ave and Chestnut Street Stage, 9:00pm
FREE

31083
Ready to Ramble
There is also enough bluegrass and Americana to fill up a damn fine folk festival. Indeed there’s a whole stage dedicated to it.

The Wood Brothers
Chris Wood, bassist for Medeski Martin and Wood, teams with his brother Oliver for some bluesy folk with a kick. More foots-y than heady.
June 27,  Harro East Ballroom, 5:30pm & 7:15pm
$20 or Club Pass

Peter Rowan
One of the all-time great voices in bluegrass, he’s been there and done that. You might even hear some yodeling.
June 25, Squeezers Roots & Americana Stage at the Sibley Building, 7:45 pm & 9:45pm
$20 or Club Pass

Steep Canyon Rangers
Previously seen at the festival backing up Steve Martin, on their own they are one of the best traditional string bands I’ve seen.
June 27,  Kodak Hall at Eastman Theatre, 4:00pm
$20

Also make time for…
Seldom Scene
June 24, Squeezers Roots & Americana Stage at the Sibley Building, 7:45 pm & 9:45pm
$20 or Club Pass

Kat Edmonson
June 21,  Little Theater, 7:00pm & 9:15pm
$20 or Club Pass
June 22,  Montage Music Hall, 6:00pm & 10:00pm
$20 or Club Pass

See the full lineup and all of the festival details at RochesterJazz.com