The ninth annual Playboy Jazz Festival will cut a wide swath both stylistically and geographically, according to details announced Thursday by producer George Wein.
Everything from traditionalism to the avant-garde will be represented, involving performers from New Orleans and New York to Britain and Panama. As usual, the festival will be presented in two marathon sessions at the Hollywood Bowl, June 13 and 14, with Bill Cosby as master of ceremonies.
Set for the first day, which will run from 2:30 p.m. to 11 p.m., are singer Sarah Vaughan; saxophonist Grover Washington Jr.; the Stan Getz Quartet; Joe Williams; the Count Basie Orchestra under the direction of Frank Foster; the Leaders, with Arthur Blythe on alto saxophone, Lester Bowie on trumpet, Chico Freeman on reeds, Kirk Lightsey on piano, Cecil McVee on bass and Don Moye on drums; Duke Dejan's Olympia Brass Band (from New Orleans); the Jeff Lorber Fusion group featuring singer Karyn White, and a 32-piece all-British jazz orchestra led by Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts.
The Sunday session, running from 2 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., will present Lionel Hampton and his Orchestra, celebrating Hampton's 60 years as a professional musician; the George Benson Trio; Kenny G, Ruben Blades, the Panamanian-born singer and composer, with his group, Seis del Solar; the Branford Marsalis Quartet; Jack DeJohnette's Special Edition; singer Etta James; guitarist Mundell Lowe's Quartet, and the winning group in the Hennessy Jazz Search.