This past Labor Day weekend marked the 40th anniversary of The Chicago Jazz Festival, as curated by the City of Chicago's Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) and the Jazz Institute of Chicago.
Jazz Fest week was kicked off with shows at neighborhood venues like Constellation, Links Hall, The Hungry Brain, Fred Anderson Park (produced by The Birdhouse), Hales Franciscan High School (produced by the Southside Jazz Coalition), The Green Mill, Old Town School of Folk, Elastic Arts and Englewood Square (produced by Live the Spirit
The Chicago Cultural Center presented live performances from 11 AM to 4:30PM on Thursday ramping up for the weekend.
Pritzker Pavilion headliners included Orbert Davis' Jazz Philharmonic, Kurt Elling (featuring Marquis Hill and Jeff "Tain" Watt), Dianne Reeves, Ramsey Lewis and Maceo Parker.
Chicago's jazz roots run deep as proven by local living legend Ramsey Lewis, who was honored for his lifetime achievement by DCASE commissioner Mark Kelly. The city also honored Jazz Showcase club owner and promoter Joe Segal for his seven decades of being an integral part of Chicago's rich jazz history.
Chicago's jazz history goes so far back that the artform's direct precursor ragtime was notably featured this year via a celebration of the "King of Ragtime" Scott Joplin. That arc continues with established Chicago-based virtuosos such as Eric Revis, Fareed Haque and Ken Vandermark amongst others, while 20s hot jazz preservationists Chicago Cellar Boys kept that history alive.
An up-and-coming crop of dedicated young artists billed as "Legends and Lions" were also featured alongside jazz legends, sharing the stage opening night with Orbit Davis' Jazz Philharmonic.
Photos of Chicago Jazz Fest by Philamonjaro Studio. For more, visit Philamonjaro online at http://www.philamonjaro.com/