Healdsburg Jazz Festival announces 2014 headliners

The Healdsburg Jazz Festival, now in its 16th year, promises to bring diverse jazz styles to wine country in late spring. The festival offers ten days of music, including a two-day mini festival, called "Celebration of the Blues."

The two-day mini festival kicks off on May 31 in the Jackson Theater in Santa Rosa. The well-known Charlie Musselwhite directs the event that "will take the audience on a historical musical journey exploring the roots of the blues, its relationship to jazz and the universal influence Blues has on many of today's musical art forms, " according to the festival's press release. To honor and celebrate Musselwhite's "diverse talent and contribution to the music world, " is one of the goals of the mini festival. It has garnered a $20, 000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts for its production.

Musselwhite, along with singer-songwriter Ben Harper, created a CD "Get Up!" that has been nominated for the Best Blues Album Grammy. The two musicians have been nominated for the Best Music Film for "I'm In I'm Out And I'm Gone: The Making Of Get Up!" Musselwhite has also been nominated for a Grammy for his role in the tribute CD, "Remembering Little Walter."

Festival Schedule:

Saturday, May 31: "Blues Meets Jazz, " Jackson Theater.

Set 1: "Blues on the Porch." Charlie Musselwhite, Elvin Bishop and Guy Davis will play and tell tales, demonstrating the influence of the blues through the 20th century.

Set 2: "Continental Drifter" Revisited. John Santos y sus Soneros will recreate the "rhythmic Son style from the 1999 recording of 'Continental Drifter.'" Musicians include Perico Hernandez and Orestes Vilató, formerly of Santana.

Sunday, June 1: "Jazz Meets Blues" Jackson Theater.

Set 1: Joshua Redman Quartet with Charlie Musselwhite. Explore the blues roots of contemporary Bay Area jazz.

Set 2: Charlie Musselwhite Blues Band with special guest Joshua Redman. Grand finale of the mini festival. Features June Core, Steve Froberg and Matt Stubbs, along with Redman and Musselwhite.

Other Festival Highlights currently scheduled:

The ten-day event begins Friday, May 30. There will be daily concerts and club shows and the festival finale on Sunday, June 8.

Thursday, June 5: Raven Theater. Marcus Shelby with the 19—piece orchestra, featuring Faye Carol plus the Healdsburg Jazz Festival Freedom Jazz Choir. Music from Shelby's suite, "Harriet Tubman, Bound for the Promised Land."

Friday, June 6: Raven Theater. Grand piano duo, Bill Charlap and Renee Rosnes.

Saturday, June 8: Raven Theater. The Ron Carter Quartet.

Sunday, June 9: Rodney Strong Vineyards. Latin Jazz extravaganza with Grammy winning bandleader and salsa singer Poncho Sanchez and His Latin Jazz Band and the Claudia Villela Trio.

During the first week of June, the Healdsburg Jazz Festival will sponsor music education programs for Healdsburg area schools, both elementary and high school.

The Healdsburg Jazz Festival was founded by Jessica Felix, the artistic director, in 1999.

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