Thursday, 19 November 2009

Jazz Fest 2009 - The Top Jazz Festivals Throughout the US

Jacksonville Jazz Festival

What started out as a one-day, free event in Florida in 1980 has turned into an impressive festival, one of the country's largest, almost 30 years later.

More than just strictly a jazz festival, this event also boasts the Great American Jazz Piano competition, which takes place at the start of the fest. The winner of that gets to play a featured set at the festival, held yearly in Jacksonville's Metropolitan Park.

Wine lovers also have the rare opportunity to not only sample some of the more than 50 featured wines at the Jacksonville Jazz Festival, but also speak with representatives from the highlighted wineries. That makes it a double-bonus weekend for devotees of jazz and wine - always a winning combination, anyway. In addition to good drink and good music, good food is served as well at the festival's traditional Sunday morning brunch.

The Jacksonville Jazz Festivals has spotlighted a variety of categories from straight-up jazz - the Ramsey Lewis Trio and Chick Corea - to the smoother side of things with David Sanborn and Chris Botti.

Mt. Hood Jazz Festival

Now in its 28th year, the Mt. Hood Jazz Festival offers jazz lovers a premier reason to travel to the beautiful state of Oregon and the Pacific Northwest.

Not too far out of Portland, the base of majestic Mt. Hood serves as setting for the festival, located in Gresham, Oregon, on the campus of Mt. Hood Community College.

Held in mid-August, the Mt. Hood Jazz festival has certainly seen its share of jazz legends take the stage. Those that have performed at the event that first started back in 1982 include: Dexter Gordon, Sonny Rollins, The Crusaders and Buddy Rich, among others.

The Mt. Hood Adventures in Jazz series also brings in musicians from outside the region to play at various venues in Portland throughout the year.

Telluride Jazz Celebration

Talk about your scenic backdrops.

Located in the middle of the breath-taking San Juan Mountains, the Telluride Jazz Celebration cannot be matched in the landscaping department.

Mountain range above, gorgeous Beer Creek and San Miguel River below - that makes for an amazing setting to listen to jazz.

As such, this festival is definitely for the nature lover. Camping spots are available for those who really want to take advantage of all Telluride, now in its 33rd year of hosting a jazz fest, has to offer. Early June is usually when the Telluride Jazz Celebration is held. A jam-friendly jazz festival, Telluride welcomes an eclectic roster, featuring bands like Licorice, Ozomalti, Benvento-Russo Duo, Rebirth Brass Band and the Jimmy Herring Band.

The festival's Jazz after Dark series takes over the nearby Sheridan Opera House and Nugget Theater.

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A First Music Festival Visit

Are you planning your first ever visit to a music festival? This article offers an insight into what you might expect to find, as well as some hints and tips on how to make the most of your day.

Having experienced a large number of festivals, I feel that I'm in a good position to be able to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of such occasions. So let's begin by discussing the advantages. Why is it that so many people decide to attend festivals each year.

One obvious reason is that the largest festivals attract a wide range of bands and acts. That means that you can often see many bands in a single weekend. As well as being great fun, this can also save you a lot of money when compared to see each of the acts individually.

Some would say that this cost saving is harder to find, especially with prices rising. Though this is true to some extent, you can still find some bargains if you choose carefully. There's no doubt that the thrill of seeing a band and hearing their music live is something special.

You'll also find yourself mixing with a lot of people who are assured to be interested in the same types of music as you. After all, that's the primary reason for people being here - to listen to the music.

So are there negatives too? There are some, but many of them probably won't come as a surprise. Organisers know that they have a captive audience and hence tend to charge higher prices for food and drink at the festival site. You might want to limit how much you consume, or find cheaper alternatives.

Festival toilets are often really poor. You can avoid them by taking along your own portable loo. Otherwise, I'm afraid that you'll have to put up with the facilities.

Getting a view of your favourite band is not always easy, depending upon the location of the festival. If you particularly want to see a particular act then try and get to the area where they are playing nice and early.

Do remember that it can be extremely hectic to be right at the front when a band are on stage.

All in all, there are far more advantages than disadvantages. Enjoy your first ever visit to a music festival!

More on camping accessories and buying festival toilets is available, as discussed by Keith Barrett. This article may be used by any website publisher, though this resource box must always be included in full.

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