Miki Howard Grammy-nominated, multi-platinum recording artist Miki Howard has moved from being one of the biggest artists on the R&B charts to one of the coolest smooth jazz singers on the scene today. Her musical artistry continues to amaze audiences as she moves comfortably from one genre to another.
Here she sings an old Dinah Washington song, "This Bitter Earth."
Kandace Springs A jazz/neo-soul singer from Nashville, 27 year old Kandace Springs is definitely on track to become a household name in jazz music. She transforms jazz and soul into a personalized sound you will not soon forget. She has performed with Prince and appeared on the late night shows of Jimmy Fallon and Jimmy Kimmel. Here she performs from her latest album, Soul Eyes, the song, "Thought It Would be Easier".
Claudia Acuña At every Festival we recognize and praise the contributions of women musicians from Latin America, the Caribbean and Mexico. Chilean vocalist Claudia Acuña appeared on the New York jazz scene in the late 90's and has been a leading voice in Latin jazz ever since.
Here she sings in Spanish the beautiful ballad "Tu, Mi Delrio".
One of the most talked about jazz singers to emerge in recent years, 26 year old, Dallas native, Jazzmeia Horn is the talk of the New York Jazz scene. While most singers her age have opted for smooth jazz Ms. Horn's music is clearly influenced by the likes of Sarah Vaughan and Betty Carter. One of the few artists to win both the Sarah Vaughan and Thelonious Monk International Competitions for vocalists she living proof that straight-ahead jazz is alive and well. Here she sings that old standard, "I Remember You."
Still in her 20's Melissa Aldana had already received more major award for her music than most musicians acquire in a lifetime. The Washington Post described her music as " a new sense of possibility and direction in jazz." She is the only woman to win the prestigious Thelonious Monk International Jazz Saxophone Competition. She is part of a new generation of young female jazz artists that are being called "the new face of jazz music." Her latest album is called Back Home. Here she appears with her trio Crash.
Grammy-winning pianist Gail Jhonson is one of the leading smooth jazz artists in the country today. She leads the acclaimed all-female band Jazz in Pink. She has appeared with jazz greats Norman Brown and Patti Austin. She is making an encore appearance at the Festival with Platinum vocalist Miki Howard and Blue Note sensation Kandace Springs.
Sunnie Paxson spent her formative musical years as the pianist in the band of the renowned bassist Stanley Clarke. She made her solo debut in 2002 with the album Groove Suite. She is one of the finest pianist on the jazz scene today. She makes an encore appearance at the 2017 festival where her music is much admired and respected.
A salute to the Divas of Gospel
The internationally acclaimed Firm Foundations gospel quartet has toured the world spreading the word. Headed by lead singer Sandra Adams, who has performed with Aretha Franklin and BeBeWinans they will pay homage to the female greats of gospel music; Mahalia Jackson, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Mavis Staples, and Ce Ce Winan. A morning of soul-stirring music rooted in the tradition of southern Black churches. These tickets are included in the Premier and Commuter Hotel Packages.