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Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Somerville Arts Council presents Joe's Jazz and Blues Fest, Saturday June 17

Produced by the Somerville Arts Council, City of Somerville, Joseph A. Curtatone, Mayor
Saturday June 17, 12-6pm(rain date 6/18)
Free outdoor festival at Powderhouse Park;
across the street from 136 College Ave.
 About the Event:
The brain child of Mayor Joe, who played trumpet in the Somerville High School Jazz Band, Joe’s Jazz and Blues Festival is back this year.
On Saturday, June 17th, get ready for a free all-day outdoor event in beautiful Powderhouse Park (a.k.a Nathan Tufts Park)!
The Somerville High School Jazz Band will kick off the concert at noon, getting the crowd going with sounds ranging from American Jazz to Delta Blues.
There will be non-stop music from 12 - 6 pm. The lineup includes: Sara Bielanski, Air Congo, The Composers Saxophone Quartet, Kit Holliday and the Ominous Vultures, and The Tarbox Ramblers.
The Lineup
12 PM Somerville High School Jazz Band
1 PM Sara Bielanski
2 PM Air Congo
3 PM The Composers Saxophone Quartet
4 PM Kit Holliday and the Ominous Vultures
5 PM The Tarbox Ramblers
12pm: Somerville High School Jazz Band
The SHS Jazz Band is an eclectic group of high school students and teachers who perform American Jazz from Big Band to Contemporary. Directed by Charles McLaren, this distinguished group often has special guests from the community sit in as featured soloists. You can find the SHS Jazz Band at local art openings, area schools, and other community events.
 1pm: Sara Bielanski
Sara Bielanski is an American vocalist whose repertoire encompasses everything from jazz to opera. Her contemporary interpretations have been described as “unforgettable” and “mystifying and beautiful”(, and critics have described her voice as “exceptional” ( Recording projects include a demo of opera choruses for BOSE, ensemble work with Boston Modern Orchestra Project, and a Bob Dylan project for WICN radio. Her debut jazz album, FROM THE HEART, was released in November 2016.
 2pm: Air Congo
Boston-based African style band Air Congo play music from the 1960’s-70’s Kinshasa/Brazzaville scene–the music of Docteur Nico, Tabu Ley, Les Bantous De La Capitale, Franco et l’Orch TPOK Jazz, and more! Drawing inspiration from the instrumental sessions that Tabu Ley’s band Afrisa recorded to be played on the jets of the Congolese airline, their instrumental readings of this amazing music are upbeat dance ravers of another age. The group is led by guitarist Nathaniel Braddock, also the leader of the much celebrated Occidental Brothers Dance Band Int’l. He is joined in this group by a cast of Boston’s hottest jazz and world music players.

3pm: The Composers Saxophone Quartet
The mission of the Composers Saxophone Quartet is to make the best of this special instrumentation. They perform original compositions and/or arrangements by local favorites as well as by members of the ensemble. Saxphone Quartet abandon traditional norms to create a special experience, incorpating of five saxes in one big band. The concept of playing with just saxes (sans a rhythm section) is like nothing else. Everyone’s sound is clearly represented and subtle nuances are not missed, showcasing the band’s ability to really swing.

4pm: Kit Holliday and the Ominous Vultures
What’s in a name? The Ominous Vultures have several aliases--all pithy, playful, and sometimes down-right silly. It is a fusion of music rooted in traditional blues and soul, designed to bring in the funk--which they take very seriously. Featuring some the areas finest, seasoned professionals, the Ominous Vultures have all worked together in various incarnations that have garnered devoted fans from both near and far. This exciting collaboration is fronted by Kit Holliday and features the talents of Monster Mike Welch Jesse Williams, Chris Anzalone, and Jeremy Parker.

5pm: The Tarbox Ramblers
Taking listeners to a place where Appalachian music and backwoods blues meet in powerful, unexpected combinations, The Tarbox Ramblers have drawn raves from Rolling Stone, All Things Considered and more. The Washington Post calls The Tarbox Ramblers “a force of nature”; The New Yorker says “Between the fiddle, string bass, drums and slide guitar, you won’t know what hit you.”
The Tarbox Ramblers have released two albums on the Rounder label, toured throughout North America and Europe, and shared the stage with Robert Plant, Alison Krauss, Buddy Miller, Dave Alvin and more. The band’s songs can be heard in TV shows like Sons of Anarchy and Supernatural.

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