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23rd annual
Boscov's Berks Jazz Fest

April 5-14, 2013

E-Newsletter: Volume 8


CLICK HERE for the complete schedule of major Berks Jazz Fest concerts.
CLICK HERE for bios, photos and other information on artists performing at fest
CLICK HERE for complete information on how to purchase fest tickets.

for printable PDF copy of official fest brochure.

Dianne Reeves, Reading Symphony to open fest in style
Dynamic jazz vocalist Dianne Reeves joins the Reading Symphony Orchestra for what promises to be an amazing concert to kick off the 23rd annual Boscov's Berks Jazz Fest.
To help celebrate the RSO's 100th anniversary, Dianne Reeves and her band will join the orchestra, under the direction of Andrew Constantine, on stage Friday, April 5, at the Sovereign Performing Arts Center.
Reeves is, without question, the pre-eminent female jazz vocalist in the world.
Reeves is a four-time Grammy winner -- the only singer to win the vocal category for three consecutive recordings in any singing category. Her versatility in song interpretation is unrivaled, a talent which is richly on display in each and every song.
Reeves appeared in George Clooney’s “Good Night, and Good Luck,” the Academy Award-nominated film that chronicles Edward R. Murrow’s confrontation with Senator Joseph McCarthy. The soundtrack recording of “Good Night, and Good Luck” provided Reeves her fourth Best Jazz Vocal Grammy in 2006.
Reeves has recorded and performed with Wynton Marsalis and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra; the Chicago Symphony Orchestra conducted by Daniel Barenboim; and was a featured soloist with Sir Simon Rattle and the Berlin Philharmonic.
This is a must-see concert during the fest!
Smokin' Joe Kubek & Bnois King a blues tour de force
There is no question why Joe Kubek has earned the nickname Smokin.'
Kubek is one of the hottest guitar players on the blues scene. He has the technique and the chops to burn up any stage and has been doing so since the 1970s, playing with Stevie Ray Vaughan and other blues legends such as  the three Kings -- B.B., Albert and Freddie.
Smokin' Joe Kubek & Bnois King headline a "Blues at the Inn" co-bill Friday, April 12, 7:30 p.m., at the Inn at Reading Ballroom.
The New York-based Chris Bergson will open the night with his band and the Berks Horns.
Kubek's career did not hit its stride until he teamed up with jazz guitarist and singer Bnois King in 1989. This union began during a regular gig in Dallas when Kubek invited King to sit in and found that King's softer, jazz-based guitar and vocals perfectly complemented Kubek's headier rock-inspired guitar work.
The combination just clicked, resulting in a tasteful blending of differing styles with satisfying, fiery results. The two formed a band and have been playing, touring, and recording together ever since.
Together, they form a musical partnership, complementing each other in a dynamic musical tour de force.
Elling named top vocalist by JazzTimes and DownBeat
Recognition from fans and critics keep rolling in for Kurt Elling.
Last week, Elling was named Best Male Vocalist for the eighth time and his 1619 Broadway: The Brill Building Project was selected as the Best New Release in the annual JazzTimes Readers Poll.
Kurt Elling, who also was runner-up for the magazine's Best Artist of the Year, will be part of the Boscov's Berks Jazz Fest, performing Saturday, April 6, 7:30 p.m., Miller Center for the Arts.
The dynamic Kutztown University Jazz Ensemble I, directed by Dr. Kevin Kjos, will open for Elling and his outstanding band.
Last month, Elling was named Male Vocalist of the Year in both the DownBeat Critics and Readers polls.
It was the seventh year Elling has topped the DownBeat Readers Poll. He has won the top spot in the Critics Poll 13 straight consecutive years.
If you have never seen Elling perform live, you do not want to miss this concert.

Grammy nods: Albright, Brown, Elling, Loeb, Sandoval, Spalding
The Berks Jazz Fest will be well represented when the Grammy Awards are handed out on Sunday, Feb. 10, in Los Angeles.
Six nominated artists will be performing at the Berks fest.
Esperanza Spalding and Kurt Elling each were nominated for Best Jazz Vocal Album.
Spalding received the nod for Radio Music Society; Elling for 1619 Broadway: The Brill Building Project.
Spalding, who won the 2011 Grammy for Best New Artist, beating out Justin Bieber, received another nomination -- Best Instrumental Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s) -- for "City of Roses," a track from Radio Music Society.
Arturo Sandoval received a nomination for Best Large Jazz Ensemble Album for Dear Diz: Every Day I Think of You.
Gerald Albright and Norman Brown received a Grammy nod for Best Pop Instrumental Album for their collaboration, 24/7.
Chuck Loeb and Fourplay were nominated in the Best Instrumental Composition category for December Dream, a track Loeb wrote for Fourplay's latest CD Esprit De Four.

      Video of the Week:
         Randy Brecker

Iconic trumpeter discusses
Brecker Brothers reunion

The Brecker Brothers were the dynamic musical duo of Michael and Randy Brecker, who became superstars with their unique jazz/fusion/funk sound in the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s.
Saxophonist Michael Brecker passed in 2007 after a long battle with cancer.
Now, Randy Brecker has put together the Brecker Brothers Band Reunion show that will be part of the Berks Jazz Fest on Saturday, April 12, with two shows -- 7 and 10 p.m. -- at the Jazz Base at the Crowne Plaza Reading.
CLICK HERE or on photo above to view JazzTimes video of Randy talking about the original Brecker Brothers and the reunion project.
The reunion band for the Berks fest features Oli Rockberger, Mitch Stein, Neil Jason and Rodney Holmes.
Walking in Michael’s huge footsteps is Randy's wife and tenor saxophonist Ada Rovatti.
Randy Brecker has been shaping the sound of jazz, R&B and Rock for more than four decades.
His history is as varied as it is distinguished. As a composer, performer and in-demand Yamaha clinician, Randy continues to influence and inspire young musicians around the world. 


        Brian Bromberg
    will be back at fest

Bassist, recovering from fall,
releases three CD projects

Brian Bromberg is a bass virtuoso, with a love of both electric and upright bass, and talent to match.
A recent back injury has slowed Bromberg for a few months, but he says he will be ready for his 13th year at Berks Jazz Fest.
The Brian Bromberg Band, featuring the Berks Horns, will headline Saturday, April 6, at the Jazz Base, performing two shows -- 7 and 10 p.m.
From acoustic bass to electric bass, Piccolo bass to synthesizer bass, Brian Bromberg brings the art of bass playing to a new level where the bass moves beyond simply being a rhythm instrument and brings it up front to be the lead voice.
Last year, an ambitious Bromberg released three CD projects.
Compared to That, is his jazziest album since the Grammy-nominated Downright Upright.
CLICK HERE to view video of Bromberg discussing the Compared to That CD project.
With the other two projects, Bromberg embraced the repertoire of two music icons -- Jimi Hendrix (Bromberg Plays Hendrix) and Antonio Carlos Jobim (In the Spirit of Jobim).

Berks Jazz Fest

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Berks Arts Council
201 Washington Street
Suite 523
Reading, PA 19601