More than 70 free gigs will be held throughout the Queenstown district at hotels, bars, restaurants and wineries during the ASB JazzFest Queenstown’s 10 day live music programme from 18 to 27 October.
“There’s a fabulous mix of acts this year with something to excite everyone, from the most discerning jazz purist to laidback lovers of live music,” says Festival Music Director Harvey Maguire.
Some of the first class acts to watch out for during the festival include:
Lauren Mitchell, who caught the attention of the New Zealand music scene with her first album ‘Debut’ - a beautiful showcase of her undeniable talents that heralded her as New Zealand's own Alicia Keys. ‘Debut’ is a sparkling collection of seductive soul and jazz with songs drawn from a well of honesty, laced with emotion, positivity, and individuality.
For a hot band playing cool blues, Australian guitar and harmonica-led quartet Mike Frost & the Icemen can't be beaten. Specialising in vintage blues, swing and R&B, their music reflects the influences of Muddy Waters’ Chicago blues, T-Bone Walker jump blues, and BB King’s sophisticated stylings with an Australian twist.
Leading jazz fusion ensemble ‘Subject2change’ (formerly Cambio) is Trevor Coleman, a three-time Emmy award-nominated composer and producer of more than 70 documentary film soundtracks. Subject2change also opens for Anika Moa on Friday 24 October.
Five piece jazz combo Zak Pack has captivated audiences around New Zealand with their tight arrangements and smooth sound. To mark ASB JazzFest Queenstown’s 30th anniversary this year Zak Pack will be paying tribute to the great Cole Porter and his influence on the jazz songbook.
Christchurch-born acoustic/electric bassist Michael Story and the Michael Story Trio are back from Melbourne by popular demand to perform their special blend of modern jazz and contemporary groove music.
Talented drummer and composer Mark Lockett joins with powerhouse saxophonist/composer Paul Van Ross to create one of the most exciting ensembles currently on the Melbourne jazz scene.
Also making a trip across the ditch is Di Bird and her band. Icons of the Australian jazz scene, this group of professional musicians excites crowds wherever they perform with their potent mix of swing classics, Latin and blues.
The free gigs culminate in a ‘Jazz in the Vines’ performance at Gibbston Valley on the final afternoon.
For more information about ASB Queenstown JazzFest’s free gigs, visit www.asbjazzfest.co.nz.