Entries by Vail Jazz

Gypsy Jazz – Necessity is the Mother of Invention

We all know the famous proverb: necessity is the mother of invention. This is the story of how true that maxim is. We begin in Belgium in 1910 when Jean “Django” Reinhardt was born into a family of itinerant Romani (Gypsy) musicians that lived in poverty, moving their caravans back and forth between Belgium and […]

Hot Club of France Tribute heats up Vail

French-born accordionist channels the high energy of the Django Reinhardt tradition It’s hard to say what resurrects the popularity of certain musical styles, but for whatever reason, the nearly 90-year- old Hot Club of France sound has become hotter than ever in 2017. Just ask French-born musician Julien Labro, who will lead the Hot Club […]

The sounds of New Orleans soar through Vail this week

In addition to tonight’s Vail Jazz Gala starring singer John Boutté, iconic pianist/vocalist Henry Butler throws down sizzling solo club shows Wednesday, then Butler, Bernstein & The Hot 9 light up Vail Square Thursday Henry Butler compares his audience connection to making love. For the 67-year-old blind pianist, connections are all about communicating without words. “The thing that I […]

Meet the 2017 Vail Jazz Workshop

Each year in late summer, a dozen of North America’s most gifted young jazz musicians come to Vail for one of the nations most highly regarded pre-college study programs. Now in its 22nd year, the Workshop is conducted exclusively, and uniquely, without any written music, emphasizing listening skills, improvisation, and playing by ear. Over ten […]

Plan for more fireworks of the auditory variety when Marcia Ball returns to Vail this Thursday

The ‘saucy’ southerner discusses ‘two-fisted’ piano, eavesdropping and being the ‘fun’ influence on her grandchildren Besides playing some of the most romping, two-fisted piano around, Marcia Ball also puts on a poppin’ summer camp. She calls it “Camp Granny” and the lucky campers are her 9- and 4-year-old grandsons. It’s a hot day at home […]

The life of a New Orleans Jazz Singer

How a cruel speech therapist, a hurricane and a stalker helps John Boutté bring tears of joy to his audiences. There’s a tropical storm ripping through Louisiana and John Boutté is watching the towering, 200-year-old trees blow and sway on his new property outside of New Orleans. “Man, I’m so fortunate,” he says during a […]