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9:00 pm – Aaron Diehl presents Jelly & George featuring Adam Birnbaum and Cécile McLorin Salvant

Monday, March 13, 2017 @ 9:00 PM

Advance ticket sales for this show have ended.
Tickets will be available at the door starting at 6:00 PM

“Jelly and George” presents the music of titans Jelly Roll Morton and George Gershwin through the modern lens of piano virtuoso, Aaron Diehl. The program takes us on a joyous journey through the music of two of jazz’s seminal pianists, whose compositions and techniques most influenced early twentieth century American music. Though contemporaries, [Gershwin (1898-1937)/Morton (1890-1941)] there is no historic record that they ever collaborated or even knew each other. Both constructed their styles from the rich array of musical sounds converging in America during that time. Gershwin, born of Russian-Jewish immigrants in Brooklyn, set a gold standard for Tin Pan Alley songwriting. Morton, a Creole New Orleanian who, although prone to exaggeration (he claimed to have invented jazz in 1902), developed a model for structuring, notating, and defining a burgeoning art form. Performing in dissimilar universes, these two pivotal figures created a rich body of work and an expansive range of popular melodies that transcends time and continues to be performed by celebrated singers and musicians throughout the world today.

“Jelly and George” will be led by the program’s producer and curator, pianist Aaron Diehl, and will feature a cadre of special guests including pianist Adam Birnbaum and Grammy Award-winning chanteuse Cécile McLorin Salvant. Diehl who plays with “melodic precision, harmonic erudition and elegant restraint” is one of the most sought-after virtuosos of the decade. Adam Birnbaum is emerging as one of the top young voices in jazz piano, having become a presence on the New York City scene, as well as many national and international stages. Birnbaum’s “variety of musical experiences have provided him with a rich melodic vocabulary and a firm sense of timing.” On Cécile McLorin Salvant, Stephen Holden of the New York Times has written “If anyone can extend the lineage of the Big Three – Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughan, and Ella Fitzgerald – it is this 26-year-old virtuoso.” Like Aaron Diehl, these operators are of the highest order, performing music that charms and captivates, and informs us about who we are. This imaginative, wholly original presentation will be sure to tickle your ears and have you tapping your feet long after the evening is done.

Aaron Diehl – piano
Adam Birnbaum – piano
Cécile McLorin Salvant – vocals
Paul Sikivie – bass
Lawrence Leathers – drums
Corey Wilcox – trombone
Evan Christopher – clarinet
Bruce Harris – trumpet

$40/Advance $45/Door
No Comp Tix
(5% city tax and service charge not included)
Doors at 8:30 pm
Sponsored by Jazz Divas


Monday, March 13, 2017
9:00 PM
Event Category:


Kuumbwa Jazz Center
320 Cedar St.
Santa Cruz, 95060 United States