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Mayor Purzycki, Cultural Affairs Director Betz Announce Performers for the 31st Annual Clifford Brown Jazz Festival and 22nd Annual Riverfront Blues Festival

Post Date:05/22/2019 10:00 AM

jazz_blues 2019 release

Mayor Mike Purzycki and City Cultural Affairs Director Tina Betz today announced the initial schedule of performances for this summer’s 2019 Clifford Brown Jazz Festival and Riverfront Blues Festival. The Clifford Brown Jazz Festival in Rodney Square—Wilmington’s premier music event and the largest free jazz festival on the East Coast—is celebrating its 31st year. The Riverfront Blues Festival, which is held at Tubman-Garrett Park on the Christina Riverfront, is now in its 22nd year. Both festivals will take place rain or shine.

The Clifford Brown Jazz Festival Rodney Square main stage concerts will be held on Wednesday, June 19 through Saturday, June 22, with performances starting at 5:30 p.m. on the weekdays and at 1 p.m. on Saturday. Wilmington will kick off Jazz Festival Week on Sunday, June 16 with a neighborhood festival at 16th and Clifford Brown Walk from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m.
The Riverfront Blues Festival, a joint production of the City and the Diamond State Blues Society, will be held Saturday, August 3 and Sunday, August 4. Tickets to the blues festival are $20 in advance/$30 at the gate (Saturday) and $15 in advance/$20 at the gate (Sunday) with a limited number of two-day passes available in advance for $25. Children 12 and under are free with a paid accompanying adult. Advance tickets go on sale Monday, June 3 and will continue until Friday, July 26.
The performers for both the jazz and blues festivals are listed below and are also available at and, along with artist bios. Visit our Facebook pages at and

2019 Clifford Brown Jazz Festival

Sunday, June 16
Beginning at 1 p.m., a Community Kick-Off event will be held at the Clifford Brown Listening Garden located at 16th and Clifford Brown Walk in Eastside Wilmington along the Brandywine River. The event features music performances, chess matches, games, food, and fun for the entire family. Artist lineup to be announced.
Wednesday, June 19 through Saturday, June 22 on the Rodney Square Main Stage
This year’s performers include Jamison Ross, Jeff Bradshaw, Pablo Batista’s Latin Jazz Ensemble with special guest Nestor Torres, Spanish Harlem Orchestra, Quincy Jones presents the Alfredo Rodriguez Trio, Christian Scott a Tunde Adjuah, The Jenkins Project, Terence Blanchard featuring the E-Collective, Raye Jones Avery & Adagio, Kendrick Scott Oracle, An Evening with Branford Marsalis, Norman Brown Summer Storm starring Euge Groove and Lindsey Webster, Mwenso & The Shakes, and Etienne Charles Creole Soul. Additional artists will be added.
Friday, June 21 – Outside the Square Block Party
More details to come.
Also on Saturday, June 22
At 11 a.m., “The Connection: Jazz, Folk Music, and African Griot in the music of Bill Withers and Curtis Mayfield” will be presented at Christina Cultural Arts Center, located at 705 North Market Street. Using the music of Bill Withers and Curtis Mayfield, two brilliant and lyrical storytellers (Griots) as well as established musical interpreters of everyday life (Folk singers), The Arpeggio Jazz Ensemble takes the audience on an interactive musical journey. The audience will recognize some of their favorites like Mayfield’s “Freddie’s Dead” and Withers’ “Grandma’s Hands” and will participate in creating jazz “riffs” that add to the core of the music’s impact while exploring the questions “Is it Jazz, Folk, or The Griot?” ….. and an even more important question:  “Does It Really Matter?” Attendees are invited to bring their instruments.
Also on Saturday, June 22
At 1:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m., “Hands On Jazz!!” will be presented at the Wilmington Library, located across the street from Rodney Square at 10 East 10th Street. This event will give children the opportunity to “touch” Jazz music via a hands-on “jam” session with The Arpeggio Jazz Ensemble. Children are invited to explore the vibrant world of jazz, singing, drumming, scatting, dancing, and using their imaginations. The goal is to remove barriers between music and audiences (of all ages) and focus on the FUN and healing powers of live music.
Sunday, June 23
At 3 p.m., The Light Up the Queen Foundation’s 2019 Graduates’ Concert of the Boysie Lowery Living Jazz Residency will be held at the Queen Theater, located at 5th and Market Streets in Downtown Wilmington. For more information about the Boysie Lowery Living Jazz Residency go to
2019 Riverfront Blues Festival
Tubman-Garrett Riverfront Park

Gates open at 10:00 each day
Saturday, August 3, 2019
Main Stage 
11:00 a.m.  – Roger Girke
12:15 p.m. – Gary Allegretto
1:30 p.m. – Bisquit Miller & The Mix
3:15 p.m. – Jarekus Singleton
5:00 p.m. – Carl Weathersby
6:45 p.m. – Larry Garner
8:30 p.m. – The Phantom Blues Band 
2nd Stage
Blues Reincarnation Project
Jimmy Pritchard Band
Lisa Jack Band
lower case blues
Sunday, August 4, 2019
Main Stage 
11:00 a.m.  – Mississippi Heat featuring Lurrie Bell
12:45 p.m. – The Billy Price Band
2:30 p.m. – Trudy Lynn
4:30 p.m. – Walter Trout
2nd Stage
Club Phred
Slim & The Perkolators
Dr. Harmonica & Rockett 88
Saturday, August 3 and Sunday, August 4
Harmonica Workshops with Gary Allegretto

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