Soul and R&B icon Aaron Neville, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band, Cherry Poppin’ Daddies and GRAMMY winner Robert Glasper are the first artists announced for RiverJazz presented by Concannon Miller this spring at SteelStacks in Bethlehem. Tickets for the four concerts, all of which will take place in the ArtsQuest Center’s Musikfest Café presented by Yuengling, are on sale at www.steelstacks.org and 610-332-3378.
On June 16, 8 p.m., RiverJazz welcomes the one and only Aaron Neville. Starting his career in the 1960s, Neville had his first hit in 1967 with “Tell It Like It Is,” which reached No. 2 on the pop charts and became a No. 1 R&B smash. In the late ’70s, he and his brothers – Cyril, Charles and Art – came together as a backing unit for their uncle’s Wild Tchoupitoulas before striking out on their own as The Neville Brothers. The sibling group found success on the touring circuit but also garnered attention for albums like their 1989 debut for A&M Records, Yellow Moon, one of the most critically acclaimed albums of that era. In 1989, Neville had his first major hit in 23 years with “Don’t Know Much,” a No. 2 pop smash that was one of several duets with Linda Ronstadt that Ronstadt included on her album Cry Like a Rainstorm, Howl Like the Wind. Tickets for Neville’s concert are $49-$59.
The Musikfest Café will be swingin’ May 23, 7:30 p.m., with the sounds of the Cherry Poppin’ Daddies. This energetic band blends the sounds of jazz, swing, rock, ska and punk to create riveting performances. Its hit single, “Zoot Suit Riot,” helped to reawaken the swing movement in the 1990s, and today the group continues to captivate audiences worldwide with its unique twist on rock ’n’ roll. Tickets for the group’s show are $39-$49.
Known for its signature sound of lowdown horns, the Dirty Dozen Brass Band has been together for more than 35 years, performing on five continents and more than 30 countries. During this time, the group has collaborated with a Who’s Who of the music world, including artists as diverse as David Bowie, Elvis Costello, Dr. John, Widespread Panic, Modest Mouse, Dave Matthews Band and the Black Crowes. The ensemble will bring its energetic stage show to SteelStacks for an 8 p.m. performance on May 26. Tickets for the concert are $35-$45.
Best known for his GRAMMY winning album Black Radio, Robert Glasper released his debut album Mood in 2003, and he was nominated for a GRAMMY for 2009’s Double-Booked. Four years later, Glasper joined with artists like Erykah Badu, Bilal, Lupe Fiasco, Lalah Hathaway, Ledisi, Meshell Ndegeocello and yasiin bey (Mos Def) for Black Radio, a recording cultivated via a series of jam sessions with the artists. The release received critical acclaim, earning Glasper a GRAMMY in the “Best R&B Album”category at the 55th GRAMMY Awards. The Robert Glasper Experiment will perform June 21, 7:30 p.m., in the Musikfest Café; tickets for the show are $27-$37.
“The 2017 RiverJazz lineup features acclaimed jazz artists, GRAMMY winners and so much more,” says Concannon Miller Director of Business Development & Marketing Betsy Storey-Bono. “We are thrilled to be the presenting sponsor of this series for the sixth year in a row, helping ArtsQuest to showcase dynamic local and nationally known jazz, R&B and swing artists. RiverJazz is the highlight of the year for many of the region’s jazz fans, as well as Concannon Miller, our clients and our friends.”
In addition to the Musikfest Café performances, RiverJazz presented by Concannon Miller also showcases dynamic local and regional jazz acts on SteelStacks’ free TD Bank Community Stage. Additional RiverJazz performances will be announced in the coming weeks.
Sponsors helping to make RiverJazz possible include Concannon Miller, along with 69-WFMZ-TV and WDIY Public Radio. For more information about series, visit www.steelstacks.org.