CLEARWATER, Fla. (WFLA)- The Suncoast Jazz Festival has been bringing a variety of performances to Clearwater Beach for more than 30 years.
“It is a real gem. It’s run by a non-profit group and it’s all volunteer. We’ve been able to keep it going for 31 years which I think speaks a lot,” Suncoast Spokesperson Greg Creamer said.
This year, the festival lineup will include over 80 musicians and high-profile performers starting Friday.
The Suncoast Jazz Festival will help support young local musicians and schools by helping them buy instruments families may not be able to afford and giving them opportunities to perform at events.
“Maybe we’ll turn these young kids that are experimenting into absolutely profound and committed jazz musicians and you can never have enough of those,” Creamer said.
Different styles of jazz will be showcased at five indoor venues between Sheraton Sand Key Resort and Marriott Suites Sand Key. Styles include classic jazz, swing, big band, zydeco, Cajun and even rockabilly.
“The Tampa Bay area is also a real hot bed of globally appreciated and recognized jazz artists and we have a number of them that are going to be coming as well,” Creamer said.
This year’s headliners are the Brubreck Brothers Quartet, who are new to Suncoast. The Ed Metz Trio with Rossanno Sportiello and Nikki Parrott and the Al Downing All Stars are also performing at the festival for the first time.
Returning performances include Jason Marsalis, Professor Cunningham and His Old School, Cornet Chop Suey, Tom Rigney and Flambeau and La Lucha.