The Denton Arts and Jazz Festival is a celebration of the arts in a community known for embracing and nurturing music, dance, choral, drama and the visual arts. The free event is produced by the Denton Festival Foundation, Inc. with the generous support of sponsors such as the Dallas/Fort Worth American Federation of Musicians Local 72-147 and the city of Denton. Held the last full weekend in April at Denton’s Quakertown Park, the event features seven stages of continuous music, fine art, crafts, and food, games and information booths in a beautiful, outdoor setting.
The Festival Foundation uses proceeds from booth rentals and concession sales to support the arts throughout the city of Denton. Arts facilities, service organizations, and preservation projects have all been the recipients of the proceeds from past events, in addition to public art for the enjoyment of all.
Come see the best that Denton has to offer – the sights, sounds and flavors that make up the Denton Arts and Jazz Festival are perfect for all ages.
Due to the large crowds we ask that you leave your pets at home – SERVICE DOGS ONLY, PLEASE and NO COOLERS IN THE JAZZ AREA!
HEADLINERS for 2014 are:
Al Jarreau - Friday, April 25 @ 9:00 pm - Al Jarreau’s unique vocal style is one of the world’s most precious treasures. His innovative musical expressions have made him one of the most exciting and critically-acclaimed performers of our time with seven Grammy® Awards, scores of international music awards and popular accolades worldwide. Called the “voice of versatility” by the Chicago Tribune and “one of the world’s greatest natural resources” by the Detroit News, Al has had an unprecedented career spanning over thirty years, including twenty-plus albums, worldwide touring, television appearances and his own star on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame”. One of the hardest working men in show business, Al Jarreau continues to tour extensively, with his sextet and Symphony show and is currently working on a new album.
The Quebe Sisters Band- Saturday, April 26 @ 7:00 pm -When Grace, Sophia and Hulda Quebe (pronounced Kway-bee) raise their fiddles and play, audiences marvel. When the girls sing their vintage style three-part harmony, audiences are blown away. Add the extraordinary rhythm guitar of Joey McKenzie and the swinging upright bass of Gavin Kelso and the Quebe Sisters Band becomes a force of nature. The QSB's unique brand of music has taken the Americana music scene by storm. They perform a refreshing blend of western swing, vintage country, bluegrass, jazz & swing standards, and Texas style fiddling.
Asleep at the Wheel - Saturday, April 26 @ 9:00 pm - The musicianship of Asleep at the Wheel has become the stuff of legends. Reuter’s pegged The Wheel as “one of the best live acts in the business.” Taking a page from Bob Wills’ book, the band has constantly toured at a national level throughout its history; with anywhere from 7-15 of the finest players Ray Benson could talk into jumping in the bus to play a string of dates. The alumni roster is well over 80+ members, and includes an impressive list of musicians who have gone on to perform with artists such as Bob Dylan, Van Morrison, Lyle Lovett, Ryan Adams, and many more. It all started when Ray Benson, Floyd Domino, and Lucky Oceans, along with a Vermont farm boy named Leroy Preston; Virginian Chris O'Connell; and Gene Dobkin, a bass player and fellow classmate of Benson's from Antioch College in Yellow Springs, Ohio, joined forces. They began with a simple goal: to play and help revive American roots music. A quick scan of awards, such as “Touring Band of the Year” (CMAs, 1976) and “Lifetime Achievement in Performance” (Americana Music Awards 2009), not to mention near dominance of the GRAMMY “Country Instrumental” category over the years, reflects the reputation of the band’s musicianship.
Brave Combo - Sunday, April 27 @ 7:00 pm - Rarely, if ever, has a band name been more apropos, not only at the group's inception, but even more so 30+ years after the fact. At first glance, back in 1979, the Denton, Texas, based outfit was, in shorthand, pegged as a New Wave polka band, a courageous if not almost oxymoronic endeavor during that particular rebirth of the cool. Yet it clicked and launched a stunning run that has now catapulted it into the new century. Over the last three decades, Brave Combo has collected a dizzying array of descriptive musical pegs, boldly going where few bands have gone before, and even fewer could (or would) dare to venture. Succeeding in its first mission, Brave Combo is America's premier contemporary polka band, and a Grammy winning one at that. Brave Combo features Carl Finch - Guitar, Keyboard, Accordion, Vocals, Jeffrey Barnes - Woodwinds, Saxophone, Vocals, Danny O'Brien - rumpet, Vocals, Little Jack Melody - Bass Guitar, Alan Emert – Drums and Ginny Mac – Accordion.