Lisa Fischer, Christian McBride, Steve Turre will be in Montclair Jazz Festival lineup

by JAY LUSTIG
montclair jazz festival 2024

The Montclair Jazz Festival will culminate with its “Downtown Jamboree” on Sept. 14.

Ironically, the fame that Lisa Fischer gained by appearing in the Oscar- and Grammy-winning 2013 documentary about backing vocalists, “20 Feet From Stardom,” has helped her concentrate more on her lead singing, since then. The dynamic Fischer — who has sung with The Rolling Stones, Tina Turner, Luther Vandross and countless others since the start of her career, in the early ’80s — and her own band, Grand Baton, will co-headline the “Downtown Jamboree” of the 15th annual Montclair Jazz Festival, taking place Sept. 14 in downtown Montclair.

Grand Baton (also featuring guitarist JC Maillard, drummer Thierry Arpino and bassist Richie Goods) has described its music as “an organic gumbo of progressive rock, psychedelic soul, and African, Middle Eastern, Caribbean rhythms and classical influences.”

MELISSA WALKER

There will be no admission charge for the festival, which is produced by the Montclair-based Jazz House Kids organization. Other performers will include Christian McBride & Inside Straight, The Steve Turre Sextet, Jerome Jennings & Ill Philosophy, The Edmar Castañeda Quartet, Brianna Thomas, the Montclair State University Jazz Ensemble (directed by Oscar Perez) and The Jazz House Collective, in a celebration of Sarah Vaughan featuring singer Melissa Walker. Comedian Alonzo Bodden will also participate.

Walker is the president and founder of Jazz House Kids, and her husband, Christian McBride, is its artistic director. This year marks the 100th anniversary of Vaughan’s birth, in Newark.

The festival will also present other events in Montclair throughout the summer, including concerts at the Wellmont Arts Plaza (outside The Wellmont Theater) and Montclair State University. For a complete schedule, visit montclairjazzfestival.org/events-calendar.

For more on Jazz House Kids, visit jazzhousekids.org.

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