Spyro Gyra plays during last year’s sold-out Suffolk Riverfront Jazz Festival at Constant’s Wharf. The event is making its second appearance in Suffolk this month.
Spyro Gyra plays during last year’s sold-out Suffolk Riverfront Jazz Festival at Constant’s Wharf. The event is making its second appearance in Suffolk this month.

Archived Story

Jazz festival set for this month

Published 8:27pm Wednesday, July 10, 2013

The second Suffolk Riverfront Jazz Festival will be held later this month, with performances both by established names and up-and-coming artists.

The event benefits the Gladys Gatlin Foundations, which assist female veterans with issues ranging from post-service housing to the lasting effects of military sexual trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder.

“Most people aren’t aware there are thousands of sexual assaults against soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines every year,” said Aubrey Wilson, director of the foundation named after his mother. “Nobody talks about it. In the end, it’s really trying to bring light to this subject and do something about it.”

The festival is set for July 26-28.

Wilson said this year’s lineup mixes well-established names like Dianne Reeves and Jeff Lorber, as well as newer artists like Maestro J and Julian Vaughn.

The festival gets started on Friday night, when Reeves will perform. This won’t be the jazz vocalist’s first performance in Suffolk, as she graced the stage at the Suffolk Center for Cultural Arts in 2007.

“The voice itself is her instrument,” Wilson said of Reeves. “That’s her crown.”

Saturday evening’s performance includes Maestro J, Vaughn, Cindy Bradley, keyboardist Jeff Lorber and saxophonist Everette Harp.

“Jeff Lorber essentially created — he’s like the father of slow jazz,” Wilson said.

A VIP brunch on Sunday morning will feature keyboard artist Alex Bugnon. The finale on Sunday evening will see saxophonist James “Saxsmo” Gates, guitarist Matt Marshak, saxophonist Warren Hill and saxophonist Walter Beasley on the stage.

“They are legends in their own rights,” Wilson said of Warren Hill and Walter Beasley. “We think we’ve got a pretty good lineup.”

The festival will be held at the Hilton Garden Inn on East Constance Road. VIP and general-admission tickets are available.

For more information, visit www.suffolkriverfrontjazz.com.

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