George Wein & Christian McBride Announce First Wave of Artists for 2017 Newport Jazz Festival

With specially-priced Flex Tickets and Early Bird Multi-Day Passes already sold out, Producer/Founder George Wein and Artistic Director Christian McBride announce the first wave of artists for the 2017 Newport Jazz Festival presented by Natixis Global Asset Management, which takes place at Fort Adams State Park and the International Tennis Hall of Fame at the Newport Casino August 4 – 6.

All NJF single-day and multi-day tickets, except the Friday night opening concert at the International Tennis Hall of Fame, go on sale today at 10:00 am (EST) at

Last year, the Festival announced artists in waves, and this is just the beginning of a series of 2017 announcements that will highlight an exciting lineup of performers over the coming weeks. The partial lineup features some of the best in traditional and modern jazz:

Friday, August 4
The Original Béla Fleck & The Flecktones
Cécile McLorin Salvant
Vijay Iyer & Wadada Leo Smith
One for All: Jim Rotondi, Steve Davis, Eric Alexander,
David Hazeltine, John Webber & Joe Farnsworth

Saturday, August 5
Snarky Puppy
Vijay Iyer Sextet
Dominick Farinacci
Antonio Sanchez & Migration

Sunday, August 6
Andra Day
Hudson: Jack DeJohnette, John Scofield, John Medeski & Larry Grenadier
Sean Jones Quintet with Brian Hogans, Orrin Evans, Luques Curtis & Obed Calvaire

"This first wave of artists is just a taste of what you will find at Newport this year, " said George Wein. "The entire lineup reflects Christian McBride's contributions in his first year as Artistic Director of the Festival, and we're excited to present some old friends along with some new faces this year."

Highlighting a few of the 2017 artists, Wein continued, "Two years ago we introduced a young lady who now tops the jazz polls: Cécile McLorin Salvant. We are proud to present her again this year as a part of our Friday program. Friday at the Fort will still present several emerging artists, as we have in the past; but we've asked one of jazz's finest artists, Béla Fleck, to headline with the original lineup of The Flecktones."

Always at the forefront of featuring stellar new artists to the world of jazz, Wein and his team booked Snarky Puppy in 2014. "We felt the group had star potential. We were right. Snarky Puppy is now one of the biggest groups in jazz, and we're happy that they will be a part of our Saturday program."

Among other not-to-be-missed artists is Vijay Iyer, one of the most talked about pianists in jazz today, who will appear twice at the festival – on Friday in duet with veteran trumpeter Wadada Leo Smith, and on Saturday with his quintet. Stay tuned for some trumpet prowess from Dominick Farinacci as well as from Sean Jones, a rising young musician who has appeared at Newport as a guest, but this year will have the opportunity to present his own group. One For All, an all-star, straight-ahead group featuring David Hazeltine, Eric Alexander, Jim Rotondi, John Webber, Steve Davis and Joe Farnsworth, is sure to swing. Antonio Sanchez, says Wein, is "a unique and creative artist and will be a major figure at this year's festival."

No stranger to Newport as a performer, Newport Jazz Festival's Artistic Director Christian McBride added, "Another new face at Newport, but a bright and shining star around the world, is Andra Day, who will be making her debut with us on Sunday. We worked together last year at the White House, and I've been a fan of hers for quite a while. Her talent is immense and I believe she will have a long, successful and fruitful career. I hope she'll be among the many artists who make a mark on the Newport audience and return again and again.

"Jack DeJohnette is one of the greatest titans walking the earth. I have played with him in Newport over the years, memorably with one of his own groups and with Bruce Hornsby. Being around him is always a learning experience, and I'm looking forward to soaking in what this staple of the jazz community will share with us this year when he appears with the group Hudson, also featuring John Scofield, John Medeski and Larry Grenadier."

Showcasing more than 50 individual jazz ensembles, Newport Jazz Festival presented by Natixis Global Asset Management will again present music on four stages, including Storyville, the intimate venue located in the former Museum of Yachting.

Newport Jazz Festival's official travel partner, WBGO Jazz 88.3FM is offering an exclusive Weekend Package for festival fans. For music lovers who want to visit the Newport Jazz Festival for one day, WBGO Travel is offering Day Trips on luxury buses which will depart from Manhattan, Brooklyn, New Jersey and Boston. Information for specific bus locations will be confirmed soon.

Newport Festivals Foundation, Inc. was founded by George Wein in 2010 to build and continue the legacies of the famed Newport Jazz Festival and Newport Folk Festival . Under the auspices of the Foundation, the Newport Jazz and Folk Festivals present performers who respect and honor jazz and folk music traditions, and at the same time reflect the changes in today's musical trends.

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