Valentine's & Presidents' Weekend, February 14-17, 2013, will again be the time for mainstream jazz lovers from around the country (& world) to arrive in Newport Beach for "Right Down The Middle And Straight Ahead" Jazz at the Marriott Newport Beach Hotel & Spa. And for this year, a special Valentine's Jazz Dinner will be offered featuring world class jazz in the Pacific Coast Ballroom, followed by the first of four nights of jazz (starting 7:30 on Thursday and 7:00pm Friday-Sunday) on the main stage of the Grand Pacific Ballroom.
Evening highlights of this 13th Annual jazz lover's weekend-
*Thursday's Grand Opening Night will be "For The Love of the Words & Music" opening with the fabulous Four Freshmen singing a great variety of love songs (among them...Our Love Is Here To Stay), followed by a return appearance by three time Academy Award winner Alan Bergman, accompanied by pianist Tamir Hendelman and bassist Trey Henry. Bringing our evening of love songs to a close will be the exciting Sammy Nestico Big Band conducted by Sammy Nestico and featuring LA's finest musicians along with party favorite Butch Miles on drums.
*Friday evening will begin with an All-Star group led by pianist Eric Reed featuring Matt Wilson, Scott Hamilton and Mike Gurrola. Our 2nd set will feature vibes great Terry Gibbs as he joins Ken Peplowski, Tom Ranier, Chuck Berghofer and Butch Miles. Internationl singing star Roberta Gambarini will make a long awaited NBJP appearance accompanied by Tamir Hendelman, Chuck Berghofer and Steve Schaeffer. And closing out the evening will be the stellar Mike Wofford-Holly Hofmann Quintet featuring Terell Stafford, Derek Oles and Matt Wilson.
*Known as "the Wonder from Down Under", Australian James Morrison will open Saturday night along with Houston Person, Terell Stafford, Eric Reed, Chuck Berghofer, Jeff Hamilton and Brian Nova. The 2nd set will feature party favorite- the Jeff Hamilton Trio, featuring Tamir Hendelman and Christoph Luty and very special guest- guitarist Graham Dechter followed by a rare Southern California appearance by Chicagoan, Frank D'Rone! Joining Frank will be Llew Matthews, Danny Flahive, Butch Miles and Doug McDonald. Closing this exciting night of music will be a Tribute to Benny Carter led by another party favorite Ken Peplowski and featuring Rickey Woodard, Bruce Babad, Gary Foster, Rossano Sportiello, Chuck Berghofer and Chuck Redd.
*Sunday, the 4th and final night, drummer Matt Wilson and trumpeter Terell Stafford will co-lead the opening set with Eric Reed, Derek Oles and Bruce forman. Mays at the Movies will follow featuring pianist Bill Mays with Nicki Parrott and Chuck Redd. Funnyman Pete Barbutti will bring his hilarious act to the stage accompanied by Rossano Sportiello, Derek Oles and Butch Miles. And bringing the 13th Annual NBJP to a roaring close will be a Tribute to vibes legend Terry Gibbs and his Dream Band featuring Jeff Hamilton with the big band conducted by Chuck Redd with an appearance by Terry Gibbs in a vibes battle not to be missed!
Featured at this year's Pool Sessions (Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 12 noon until 3:30pm), will be Hammond B3 wizard Tony Monaco with Bruce Forman and Matt Wilson; Holly Hofmann, Mike Wofford, Nicki Parrott, Matt Wilson; A Salute To Basie with the CSU Northridge A Band directed by John Daversa; Butch Miles' Express with Terell Stafford, James Morrison, Scott Hamilton, Rossano Sportiello, Danny Flahive; Ken Peplowski Quartet; Trumpet Fireworks with Terell Stafford & James Morrison; Two Drummers & Two Tenors featuring Jeff Hamilton & Matt Wilson and Ken Peplowski & Scott Hamilton; Mike Costley Quintet featuring Llew Matthews & Brian Nova; Colburn Conservatory Big Band directed by Willie Murillo with a special appearance by Gordon Goodwin and singer Becky Martin. Also offered- "up close & personal" jazz duos & trios in Sam & Harry's & The Ritz Restaurant.