Cyrille Aimee, Tim Warfield & More Set for East Lansing's 2013 Summer Solstice Jazz Festival, 6/21-22


The 17th Annual Summer Solstice Jazz Festival (SSJF) will make its way to downtown East Lansing on June 21-22, featuring a high-caliber ensemble of local, regional and national jazz performers. The festival is presented by the City of East Lansing, Wharton Center for Performing Arts and the MSU College of Music.

Since 1996, the SSJF has hosted musicians who have won numerous awards, acted in critically-acclaimed films, and performed in world-famous venues. Here are some highlights of past performers:

2007: Johnny O'Neal

  • Played Art Tatum in the movie Ray (2004)
  • His latest CD, Dedicated, has been on the charts in the Top10 on JazzWeek for 6 weeks now

2008: Sophie Milman

  • Won the 2008 Juno Award (the Canadian Grammys) for "Vocal Jazz Album of the Year" for Make Someone Happy
  • Her fifth album, Take Love Easy, debuted at #1 on Billboard's Canadian jazz chart and reached #4 in the U.S.

2009: Esperanza Spalding

  • Became the youngest instructor at Berklee College of Music at the age of 20
  • Personally selected by President Obama to perform at the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize Ceremony and Concert in Oslo, Norway
  • First and only jazz artist to win the Grammy Award for "Best New Artist" in 2011

2010: Joe Lovano

  • His album Quartets: Live at the Village Vanguard won the Down Beat Magazine award for "Jazz Album of the Year"
  • Performed with Esperanza Spalding in the quintet US5
  • Appears in the film The Missing Person (2009)

2011: Grace Kelly

  • Youngest ever musician voted to the Down Beat Magazine Critics Poll at age 16
  • Since age 12, has performed over 500 concerts all around the world at prominent venues such as the Montreal Jazz Festival, Newport Jazz Festival, Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, Tanglewood Jazz Festival, and the Detroit Jazz Festival
  • At age 18, released her sixth album, Man with the Hat (2011), a collaboration with jazz legend Phil Woods

2012: Wycliffe Gordon

  • Former member of the Wynton Marsalis Septet and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra
  • Named Jazz Journalists Association "Trombonist of the Year" 2001-2002, 2006-2008, and 2011-2013; named Downbeat Magazine's Critics Choice "Best Trombone" in 2012
  • Re-orchestrated the theme song for NPR's "All Things Considered" in 1995