By Raymond Ward, The New 411
After the August 8 premiere of The Central Park Conservancy and Jazzmobile Presents Great Jazz on the Great Hill, JazzmobileSUMMERFEST has taken to the “airwaves” demonstrating that New York City’s longest-running Jazz festival is going strong! The new season promises to be another outstanding year of high-quality performances, bringing straight-ahead, swing, blues, Latin, Afro-Cuban concerts and more to their thousands of followers and new fans.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Jazzmobile made an official announcement in March that SUMMERFEST2020 was not and will not be cancelled, clearly a leap of faith and they are remaining true to their word. By establishing Jazzmobile TV on YouTube, they are premiering weekly performances that are then available any time On Demand, making it possible for an even wider audience to view these stellar programs through September 30 at home or wherever they are.
Jazzmobile’s SUMMERFEST2020 continues a cultural legacy begun in 1964 by pianist, composer, educator and NEA Jazz Master, Dr. Billy Taylor, along with philanthropist and arts administrator Daphne Arnstein and saxophonist, composer, educator and NEA Jazz Master Jimmy Heath. This iconic summer concert series is the longest continuous running free Jazz festival in New York City, and is still free, with no registration fee or online ticket required.
Great Jazz on the Great Hill (GJGH), Director’s Cut, a partnership with the Central Park Conservancy, premiered on Saturday, August 22. The thousands who normally come to GJGH every year will now be able to enjoy the music of vocalist and MC Alyson Williams, trumpeter Jeremy Pelt and his quartet, and the George Gee swing band with vocalist John Dokes on Jazzmobile TV: YouTube.
Jazzmobile once again collaborated with Harlem Week, a week-long celebration of African American art, culture and economic development. More of Jazzmobile’s partners this year include the Harlem Music Festival, sponsored by the West Development Corp.
All SUMMERFEST concerts are free and are subject to change. For viewing, the schedule and updates go to www.jazzmobile.org or call the SUMMERFEST hot line at 212.866.3616.