Philly funk and jazz take a trip to Newport this summer and spark a reunion with a group of special friends and former classmates when Newport Jazz Festival Artistic Director Christian McBride gets together with Questlove and Black Thought from The Roots and Joey DeFrancesco, who all graduated from Philadelphia’s Creative and Performing Arts High School in 1989.
The Philly roll call also includes Uri Caine, Orrin Evans, Leslie Odom, Jr., George Burton and the legendary Benny Golson.
The Newport Jazz Festival presented by Natixis Global Asset Management welcomes The Philadelphia Experiment, a collaborative project of Christian McBride, Amir “Questlove” Thompson and Uri Caine. The group will take the Quad Stage at 1:55 on Sunday afternoon, bringing the Fort to life with their eclectic mix of Caine’s jazz/classical piano background, Thompson’s hip-hop drumming and McBride’s virtuosity on jazz bass.
The Philadelphia Experiment was conceived by Philadelphia producer, Aaron Levinson as a way to bring together and showcase the talents of different Philadelphia-born musicians making Philadelphia-inspired music. Though McBride, Thompson and Caine were familiar with one another, they had never before played together professionally. The result of this “experiment,” their 2001 album recorded in three days, is an amalgamation of styles coming together in a wildly funky masterpiece.
McBride, Thompson and Caine will also take the festival stage individually with their own bands. The Uri Caine Trio plays Saturday on the Harbor Stage at 12:10 pm, the Christian McBride Big Band plays the Fort Stage on Saturday at 12:45 pm and The Roots mount the Fort Stage on Sunday at5:00 pm. McBride, a Newport Jazz Festival veteran, will be on hand this year as both a musician and the recently appointed artistic director of the festival.
On Friday, George Burton hits the Harbor Stage at 12:55 and Leslie Odom, Jr, star of the Broadway hit, “Hamilton” brings his jazz band to Newport’s Quad Stage at 3:25 pm, followed by Joey DeFrancesco + The People at 4:50 pm. The elder statesman, Benny Golson, takes his turn at Newport with his quartet on the Harbor Stage on Saturday at 2:50 pm. Orrin Evans plays solo piano in Storyville Sunday at 12:00 pm and then takes the piano chair in the Sean Jones Quintet at 4:05 pm.
The 2017 Newport Jazz Festival presented by Natixis Global Asset Management takes place August 4 – 6 at Fort Adams State Park and the International Tennis Hall of Fame at the Newport Casino. Artists also include Béla Fleck & The Flecktones; Snarky Puppy; Andra Day; Branford Marsalis Quartet; Cécile McLorin Salvant; Maria Schneider Orchestra; Hudson: Jack DeJohnette, Larry Grenadier, John Medeski & John Scofield; Maceo Parker; Vijay Iyer & Wadada Leo Smith and many more.
For the complete line-up, tickets and more information, visit www.newportjazz.org.