The Summertime Blues 2004
featuring jazz, blues, reggae and zydeco

Jazz in the ParkSummertime and the living is easy. As much as I love Eddie Cochran, he was wrong when he said "there ain't no cure for the summertime blues." There is. And it's the blues at its best. Get into the rhythm with ribs, beer n' barbeque and picnics on the grass. Remember. The blues make you happy.

Let's not forget the offspring of the blues - jazz. There'll be plenty of jazzy sounds filling the parks of Las Vegas and other outdoor venues such as the Fremont Experience. So grab your partner, pack a lunch, and prepare to enjoy the beautiful southwest weather and the jazz n' blues that will fill the air. Below you'll find a list of outdoor festivities. Enjoy the summer.


march april may june july august september october november

March 5-6

This year's Race Jam Weekend will feature blues harmonica player/vocalist Kim Wilson (Tuff Enuff) and his band. Live music on two stages from 6 p.m. - 11 p.m. Fremont Street Experience. Information at vegasexperience.com or call 702.678.5777

April 16-17
Mardi Gras Festival

Fremont Street Mardi Gras Celebration It's Mardi Gras Vegas style at the Fremont Street Experience (678-5777) Eighth Annual Mardi Gras Celebration Friday and Saturday, April 16th and 17th . The free two-day Big Easy Bash includes five city blocks rockin' all weekend long with free entertainment on two stages, outrageous parades, and awesome Light and Sound Shows.

The entertainment lineup for Friday night includes Bennie & the Swampgators and Bonne Musicque Zydeco performing from 6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. and Lil' Malcolm and the House Rockers and CJ Chenier & the Red Hot Louisiana Band performing from 9:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m. The entertainment lineup for Saturday night includes Bennie & the Swampgators and Bonne Musicque Zydeco performing from 6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. and Lil' Malcolm & the House Rockers and CJ Chenier & the Red Hot Louisiana Band performing from 9:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m. Free performances are held on two stages all weekend long.

April 18
Open Meeting & Blues Party
Come join the Southern Nevada Blues Association on Sunday and meet with some great blues people! The meeting is at 1:00 p.m. and will be followed by a blues jam and bar-b-que. For details go to SNVBlues.org or call the Blues Hotline at 702.812.3088

Little Charlie & the Nightcats

April 21-24
Rockin' on the River - 22nd Annual Laughlin River Run
More than 60,000 motorcycle enthusiasts from all walks of life converge in what has become the West's largest ride-in bike rally. Colorado Belle will host vendors and 4 days of free live Blues and Rock in Center Circle, our outdoor entertainment venue, featuring the legendary blues guitarist Michael Burks and his band, Little Charlie and the Nightcats, Kelly Richie, and Moanin' Blacksnakes, Plus the Miss Hawaiian Tropic Laughlin Contest! Book your room today! Call 866-352-3553.

April 24
Las Vegas City of Lights Jazz Festival
The 11th Annual Las Vegas City of Lights Jazz Festival will be held at Desert Breeze Park overlooking the lights of the Las Vegas Strip on Saturday from 12 noon to 10:00 pm. This years festival lineup is Rick Braun, Kirk Whalum, Norman Brown performing as BWB, Brian Culbertson, Mindi Abair, Michael Lington, Bobby Lyle, Michael Manson, Nick Colionne, Marcus Johnson, and the Lao Tizer Band.

April 24
International Food & Folklife Festival of Southern Nevada
At the Clark County Amphitheater from 11:00 a.m. - 8:30 p.m. Bonafide, a Jamaican Reggae band, performs at 7:00 p.m. Free. No Food or drinks may be carried in at this event and no pets please!

For the fourth year this long-time community event offers food from vendors from over 15 countries, traditional music and dance performances on two stages, cooking demonstrations, handmade ethnic craft sales and a children’s craft and activity area. The International Food & Folklife Fest is co-sponsored by Clark County and the International Festival Association, a non-profit organization. The International Food & Folklife Fest funded in part by a grant from the Nevada Arts Council.

April 30
Frank Wright Concert Series
Lunchtime Concert Series at Frank Wright Plaza, 11:30 am - 1:30 pm. Stewart and Fourth Street across from City Hall. Info 702.229.4614

May 2
Las Vegas Jazz Society Annual Jazz Picnic

Las Vegas Jazz Society Jazz Picnic Sunday, May 2, 3 pm. Bring a picnic. Food and beer vendors also on site. Please leave your pets at home. The Las Vegas Jazz Society's 41st annual FREE Jazz Picnic features three very different bands: Joe Torres and the UNLV Latin Jazz Ensemble, Greg Marciel and Therapy, and Deacon Blue.

Joe Torres, with the support of the UNLV jazz studies program, started the Latin Jazz Ensemble, which boasts great young talent and the legendary seventy-something Luis Miranda, who recorded with Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie and the equally legendary Tata Palao.

Greg Marciel's Therapy can always be counted on for fresh, grabby arrangements, hot players and a passionate performance of burning straightahead jazz.

Concert-goers once roared their approval of tenor saxist Joe Escriba's "Georgia on My Mind," a highly original and deeply bluesy version with a sound like Arnett Cobb's. Now Joe leads Deacon Blue, which includes singers Roger Garrett and Dolly Coulter; blues-drenched guitarist and lead singer Rob Prince. Joe has written most of the charts; others are by Gary Cordell, Walt Blanton and Chuck Dalton. Other members are: Gary Cordell and Walt Blanton, trumpets; Dwight Smith, trombone; Adam Hoffman, bari sax; Etsuko Mader, keyboards; Jeff Zin, bass; Al Guzman, drums. -- Las Vegas Jazz Society

Winchester Cultural Center, 3130 South McLeod Drive, 702.455.7340

May 7
First Friday May Funfest
Street Festival in the Arts District. The Cultural Affairs Division teams up with First Friday to offer a nighttime street festival as part of a month-long celebration of the arts downtown. Local bands, including Killian’s Angels, Bluesology, Vista IV and Gregg Young & the 2nd Street Band, perform on two Showmobile stages. There are gallery openings, studio previews, food booths from neighborhood restaurants, and a beer and wine garden. Explore the urban ambience of a new arts scene downtown! Free arts bus travels a 30-minute route through the area. 6-10 p.m. Colorado Avenue between 3rd Street and Main Street. Boulder Avenue between Casino Center and Main Street. Call 702.229.1237 or 384-0092.

May 7
Frank Wright Concert Series
Enjoy alfresco dining while listening to a variety of musical entertainment. Bring a sack lunch or purchase meals from food vendors. Frank Wright Plaza at 4th Street and Stewart Avenue, across from City Hall. 11:30 am - 1:30 pm. Call 702.229.4614

May 7-8
Cars, Stars, & Guitars
With John Earl & the Boogieman Band (1-5pm) and Road Rockets (6–10pm). Cannery Hotel & Casino, 2121 East Craig Road, Gate Charge: $3, 702.895.3900

Jazz in the Park Concert Series
Clark County Amphitheater Clark County’s long-running free Jazz in the Park series celebrates its tenth year with a strong lineup of nationally known artists. 8:00 p.m. Admission is free and picnics are welcome. Lawn sitting. Amphitheater opens at 6:00 p.m. The concert begins at 8:00 p.m.

“Jazz in the Park” is one of Clark County Parks & Community Services longest-running programs, starting in 1990 at Paradise Park under the direction of jazz announcer Alan Grant. After moving from Paradise Park to Winchester Park and back again, the series finally found its home at the Clark County Amphitheater.

May 8
Pat Martino
The series kicks off with Blue Note recording artist Pat Martino. Guitarist Martino’s virtuoso playing is even more remarkable given the fact that he came back from a near-fatal brain aneurysm in 1980. Following surgery he had to completely re-learn the instrument, which he did in part by listening to his own recordings. His acclaimed “Live at Yoshi’s” album was Grammy-nominated for best jazz instrumental album and best jazz instrumental solo. FREE. 8p Government Center Amphitheater, 500 S. Grand Central Parkway 702.455.8200

May 14
Frank Wright Concert Series
Lunchtime Concert Series at Frank Wright Plaza, 11:30 am - 1:30 pm. Stewart and Fourth Street across from City Hall. Info 702.229.4614

May 21
Frank Wright Concert Series
Lunchtime Concert Series at Frank Wright Plaza, 11:30 am - 1:30 pm. Stewart and Fourth Street across from City Hall. Info 702.229.4614

May 22
Mike Gurciullo & the Las Vegas Lab Band
Trumpeter Gurciullo has amassed a collection of great arrangements by some of the biggest names in jazz, and his band features the best of Las Vegas jazz artists. They can be heard Monday nights at Murphy’s Pub on E. Sunset and Annie Oakley.

May 28
Frank Wright Concert Series
Lunchtime Concert Series at Frank Wright Plaza, 11:30 am - 1:30 pm. Stewart and Fourth Street across from City Hall. Info 702.229.4614

June
Jazz Festival
Live jazz bands from all over the country congregate under the Fremont Street aracade for a three day festival during the first week of June. Call 702.678.5777 for more information.

June 4
First Friday June Funfest
Arts, entertainment and culture events at downtown arts establishments. 6-10pm. Info 702.384.0092

June 5
Marlena Shaw
Vocalist Marlena Shaw returns to Jazz in the Park with a trio on June 5. Shaw sang with Count Basie while still in her teens, and has recorded for several prestigious jazz labels throughout her forty-plus career. Her effervescent style is particularly appealing in her live performances, which showcase her trademark blending of jazz, pop, and blues.

June 12
3rd Annual "Reggae in the Desert" Festival
Reggae music has traveled across the continents from its birthplace in Jamaica, spreading the message "out of many, one people." Now you too, can come enjoy the mystic sounds of various Rastafarians, as well as food and drink vendors and craft sales. Admission and times will be available online at www.reggaeinthedesert.com Government Center Amphitheater, 500 S. Grand Central Parkway 702.455.8200

June 18-20
Blues, Brews & BBQ Festival
At the Cannery Casino and Hotel. Various Blues Artists, Local BBQ Restaurants and Special Brews. Friday's lineup is Little Chris and the Nightcrawlers (5–8pm), Chris Hiatt & Cold Shot - a tribute to Stevie Ray Vaughan (8:30pm–12am), and Moody Scott – Outdoor Festival (6pm–12am). Appearing on Saturday will be Blues Storm (12-3pm), Little Chris & the Nightcrawlers (3–6pm), Blowin Smoke Rhythm & Blues (6–9pm), Chris Hiatt & Cold Shot (9pm–12am), and Moody Scott – Outdoor Festival (6pm-12am). Sunday's schedule is Blues Storm (12–2:30pm), Blowin Smoke Rhythm & Blues (2:30–4:30pm), Chris Hiatt & Cold Shot (5–8pm), and Moody Scott – Outdoor Festival (6pm–12am). Tickets: TBD.

June 19
Danilo Perez
This performance completes the Jazz in the Park series. The Panamanian pianist, still in his thirties, combines elements of bebop with African and Latin influences. Perez studied at the Berklee School of Music, and played with John Hendricks and Paquito D’Rivera before teaming up with Dizzy Gillespie to perform and record in Gillespie’s final years. Perez’s latest album is “…Till Then” released in 2003 on the Verve label.

July 2
First Friday July Funfest
Arts, entertainment and culture events at downtown arts establishments. 6-10pm. Info 702.384.0092

August 6
First Friday August Funfest
Arts, entertainment and culture events at downtown arts establishments. 6-10pm. Info 702.384.0092

march april may june july august september october november
Summertime Blues 2003


Jazz n' Blues Festivals Around The World
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Last morph April 22, 2004