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City’s downtown jazzing up

Posted on June 1, 2016 by Richard Amery

The streets will be alive with the sounds of jazz music for the Lethbridge Jazz Festival on June 10-18. As usual this year’s festival features jazz for all tastes. “There is straight-ahead jazz, blues and gospel. There is something for everyone,” promised Lethbridge Jazz Society president Josh Davies, who just ended his first year as president.
“We try to find a balance between well known artists like Tommy Banks who has been playing for quite a few years and artists who are on the rise,” he continued. Davies teaches trumpet at the U of L and sometimes plays with local R and B and pop band Hippodrome.
This year’s jazz festival includes some familiar faces who have played previous years including Tommy Banks, who will be performing with Jens Lindeman at the Sterndale Bennett Theatre, June 17.
Tickets for that show are $35.
Another familiar face, blues musician Kat Danser, returns to play the Owl Acoustic Lounge, June 17 as well at 9:30 p.m. Tickets are $20 for that show as well.
This year’s festival features some other familiar faces including Ottawa-born blues musician Sue Foley who brings her band to the Slice, June 18. Tickets are $20.
Jazz in the Park, June 18, features some of the festivals highlights performing in Galt Gardens throughout the afternoon including the Sandwich Quintet, Hippodrome, the Groove Apostles, Kat Danser, Papa King Cole and the Boogie Machine plus the Sue Foley band.
There will be music throughout the downtown on the streets as well as part of the Suppertime Jazz Program at several downtown eateries.
As usual, youth will be a prominent part of the jazz festival as 240 youth in 12 different school-based jazz ensembles will be part of the Young Lions concert, which opens the festival at the Gate, June 10.
And Calgary-based crooner and CBC radio personality Tim Tamashiro plays the Sterndale Bennett Theatre, June 18 at 7:30 p.m.
“We’re really excited about that. He’s worked in radio and will be great to have. He’ll talk about jazz,” Davies said.
This year’s Sweet Inspiration Gospel concert at the Southminster Church features Dee Daniels, who performs on Wednesday, June 15.
“We have traditional jazz music and build up the new at the same time,” he said.
He is excited to bring Tamashiro to town. Tickets for the show are $35.
“We’re also trying to focus on local acts because there is a lot here that people might not be aware of,” said Davies, who is a part of the Starlight Lounge program at the Lethbridge Lounge, June 16 at 7:30 p.m.
It features a local orchestra performing a show based on old-time radio shows.
“It’s a local band. We do a wonderful show, We play old ’30s and ’40s songs.
“It will be such an exciting evening. We’re doing a top-40 radio show with the Lethbridge Big Band and some special guests. It will be vocal based,” he said.
He is excited about this year’s extended festival.
“We’ve got the biggest and the best.
“We work on this event all year so we encourage people to come and check it out,” he said.

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