There are sunny days ahead for jazz in Southern California since all the major events are taking place at the same venue, the Hollywood Bowl.
Most promising is the 12th annual Playboy Festival, for which an unusually strong lineup has been assembled. The first day, Saturday, June 16, will feature the Miles Davis band, Chick Corea's acoustic group, Doc Severinsen with the "Tonight Show" band, Joe Williams with his special guest Jay McShann, the octogenarian blues pianist and singer; drummer Tony Williams and his combo; Poncho Sanchez and his salsa group with guest Tito Puente and the Eliane Elias Trio.
On June 17, Chick Corea will return, this time with his electric band. Pianist Dorothy Donegan will make a rare appearance. Completing the bill are Lee Ritenour, the Gerry Mulligan Quartet; Milton Nascimento with guest Wayne Shorter, Hiroshima, the Lionel Hampton orchestra and another contest-winning group.
The regular "Jazz at the Bowl" series will include Oscar Peterson and the Benny Carter Orchestra on July 18; Wynton Marsalis in a salute to Satchmo, featuring Clark Terry, Doc Cheatham and other trumpeters, Aug. 1; Ella Fitzgerald Aug. 22; the bands of Count Basie, Glenn Miller and Tommy Dorsey, respectively led by Frank Foster, Larry O'Brien and Buddy Morrow, Sept. 5; and, to close out the season, Tony Bennett with the George Shearing Duo and singer Diane Schuur on Sept. 12.