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The Jacksonville Jazz Festival Returns with Kenny Barron, Gregory Porter, Nicholas Payton, Lakecia Benjamin, Keiko Matsui and More at New Venue Sites – JME Jacksonville Music Experience

This Memorial Day weekend, the Jacksonville Jazz Festival is held in the downtown district, with performances at Metropolitan Park and Daily’s Place.

A staple of city-run cultural events for four decades, each year jazz legends and emerging artists perform at multiple on-site venues. Last year’s festival attracted an estimated 75,000 attendees, creating an estimable, positive economic impact on the city. Due to construction at the Riverfront Plaza, the artists for this year’s festival are performing at Daily’s Place and Metropolitan Park.

Originally held in 1979, over the course of its 40+ years, the Jacksonville Jazz Festival has presented performances by dozens of international, national and local jazz greats. Miles Davis, Dizzy Gillespie, Sonny Rollins, Tony Bennett, the Modern Jazz Quartet and Natalie Cole. It also boasts the Jacksonville Jazz Piano Competition, where five jazz pianists compete for a cash prize and a chance to perform at the festival. While the festival has changed venues over the years, it still attracts jazz fans from around the globe and is a cool way to get ready for our incoming warmer weather.

Scheduled performers for this year’s festival include the Stanley Clarke Band, Joss Stone, Chucho Valdés Royal Quartet, Brian McKnight 4, Lee Ritenour and Dave Grusin, the Kenny Barron Trio, Brian Culbertson, Nicholas Payton, Jamison Ross, Michelle Manzo, Lakecia Benjamin, Keiko Matsui, Gregory Porter and more. The festival is free and VIP ticket packages are available here.