George Benson photo by Kwaku Alston

This year’s 27th Annual TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival kicks off on June 22, with a 10 day event sure to impress jazz lovers of all ages. Vancouver is lucky to have the both George Benson and The Avett Brothers featured as the Festival’s Marquee Series on Saturday, June 23 and Tuesday, June 26 respectively. Tickets for a selection of major artists performing during the Vogue Series (as well as George Benson and The Avett Brothers) will go on sale Saturday, February 18.

Here’s a roundup of this year’s Festival highlights. All tickets are available for purchase in advance. Visit the website for detailed information and updated shows to be added as the event draws closer. Tickets will be available online, by phone (604.569.11444), or in person at the box office (918 Granville Street).

George Benson
Venue: Orpheum Theatre
Date: Saturday, June 23, 8 pm
Tickets: $75/70/65 plus service charge
10-time Grammy winner is one of the giants of music, with “This Masquerade” the first song in history to reach #1 on the jazz, R&B, and pop charts.

The Avett Brothers
with special guests The Davide Mayfield Parade
Venue: Orpheum Theatre
Date: Tuesday, June 26, 8 pm
Tickets: $40/35/30 plus service charge
Their latest album, produced by Rick Rubin (Johnny Cash, RUN DMC), is a propulsive, foot stomping “punkgrass” folk master- piece that filters CSNY countrified boogie through the Brothers’ early neo-punk roots.

Bill Frisell plays John Lennon “All We Are Saying”
with special guests The Pugs & Crows Band feat. Tony Wilson
Venue: Vogue Theatre
Date: Friday, June 22, 9 pm
Tickets: $45 plus service charge
Reflective and lyrical, Grammy Award winning guitarist Bill Frisell (Jack DeJohnette, Elvis Costello, Norah Jones) selects notes and textures with the same care and unparalleled taste he uses in selecting his high-calibre collaborators. For this project, Frisell applies his soulful arcs and rootsy undertones to an exploration of the music of John Lennon, alongside some of the most broadminded and expressive musicians on the planet including longtime John Zorn accomplice Kenny Wollesen drums, Lounge Lizard and Willie Nelson sideman Tony Scherr bass, and string-master Greg Leisz steel guitar.

Dianne Reeves
[Dianne Reeves. Photo credit: Christian Lantry]

An Evening with Dianne Reeves
Venue: Vogue Theatre
Date: Saturday, June 23, 9 pm
Tickets: $45 plus service charge
Recognized as one of the world’s pre-eminent jazz vocalists, Dianne belongs to the pantheon of great jazz singers such as Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan. Reeves combines all her influences to create a jazz-world-pop-bop synthesis that the Boston Globe calls “breathtaking.”

Spectrum Road feat. Jack Bruce, Cindy Blackman-Santana, John Medeski & Vernon Reid
Venue: Vogue Theatre
Date: Monday, June 25, 9 pm
Tickets: $45 plus service charge
A sensational jazz-fusion supergroup, Spectrum Road features Jack Bruce (Cream) bass, Vernon Reid (Living Color) guitar, keyboardist John Medeski (Medeski, Martin, and Wood), and Tony Williams protégé Cindy Blackman-Santana (Lenny Kravitz, Santana), channeling Tony on the drums.

Wayne Shorter
[Wayne Shorter. Photo credit: Henry Leutwyler]

Wayne Shorter Quartet
feat. Brian Blade, John Patitucci and Danilo Perez
with special guests Brad Turner Quartet
Venue: Vogue Theatre
Date: Tuesday, June 26, 9 pm
Tickets: $55 plus service charge
“Legendary saxophonist Wayne Shorter is widely acknowledged to be jazz’s greatest living composer, possessed of a rare combination of technical mastery and boundless creative energy. His output as a leader for Blue Note Records, as well as his work with Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers and the second classic Miles Davis Quintet of the 1960s, may arguably be the finest and most productive ten-year stretch in the history of music.”

Today, with pianist Danilo Perez, bassist John Patitucci and drummer Brian Blade he leads an acoustic powerhouse band that critics and fans are calling “the best small group in jazz.”

with special guests Inhabitants
Venue: Vogue Theatre
Date: Friday, June 29, 9 pm
Tickets: $25 plus service charge
“The Polaris Music Prize nominated album Kaputt sees Dan Bejar, the unorthodox singer/songwriter, standing back and letting the musical interplay have a far more significant role than on any previous releases. Bejar’s relationship to the confident soft rock sonics of his band evokes a wise and winking outsider poet, wandering the neon streets of a vibrant cosmopolitan city, bemused, a bit detached, but enthralled by the pulse of the night.”

Robert Randolph & The Family Band
with special guests Rich Hope & His Evil Doers
Venue: Vogue Theatre
Date: Saturday, June 30, 9 pm
Tickets: $40 plus service charge
Randolph’s latest album—the T Bone Burnett-produced “We Walk this Road”—is a celebration of African-American music of the past one hundred years, from gospel to early blues, to good old rock and roll. Named one of Rolling Stone’s Top 100 Guitarists of All Time, Robert Randolph learned to play the pedal steel (aka “Sacred Steel”) in church, and this upbringing is reflected in his musical mission to bridge generations and uplift audiences.

Los Amigos Invisibles

Los Amigos Invisibles
Venue: Vogue Theatre
Date: Sunday, July 1, 9 pm
Tickets: $25 plus service charge
Latin Grammy award winners Los Amigos Invisibles have been spreading their fiery dance band grooves around the world ever since they roared out of Venezuela in 1995. The band actually got its first break when David Byrne discovered one of their albums in a record shop and shortly after signed them to his label, Luaka Bop. Years later, these Latin alternative kingpins continue to electrify audiences with their explosive live shows.

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