• 2020 Schedule

  • 7/2/2020 Jessy J

    With the release of her dynamic new album Live at Yoshi’s – 10 Year Anniversary Special, Jessy J celebrates a remarkable decade since she brought her sizzling beats, dynamic Latin and samba rhythms and sensual melodies to contemporary jazz via her #1 hit debut album Tequila Moon. Following in the
    tradition of other jazz greats – including Dee Dee Bridgewater, Pat Martino, Joe Pass and Arturo Sandoval – who have released albums recorded at the historic Oakland venue, the charismatic saxophonist captures the excitement and spontaneity of her live performances with a set list featuring her classic hits and several songs fresh to her eclectic repertoire.
    On Thursday night, July 2nd, she will be displayed on the Branford Town Hall stage for the start of the 12h annual Branford Jazz Series at 6:30 p.m.
    Her previous releases include True Love (2009), Hot Sauce (2011), Second Chances (2013), My One and Only One (2015) and California Christmas (2016), which marked her debut on her own independent label Changi Records.
    visit JessyJ

  • 7/9/2020 Abe Ovadia Organ Trio

    Having emerged as one of the preeminent guitarists on the New York City Jazz scene, Aba Ovadia and his organ trio will be showcased in the Branford Jazz Series schedule on Thursday, July 9th.
    A jazz virtuoso, one of the most innovative guitarists of our time, Abe holds a master’s degree from Berklee College of Music and a master’s from New York University’s highly acclaimed jazz performance program. He is also a recipient of the Best Guitarist of 2016 Award from Hot House Jazz Magazine.
    Predominant voices in the industry have recognized Abe’s contribution to today’s jazz. In 2010, Jeff Levenson of Warner Brothers honored Abe as a “Promising Artist of the 21st Century”, leading up to an international tour. Since then, Abe has developed a unique identity on the instrument and as a band leader, featuring an innovative and emotionally-charged energy that’s is unrelenting.
    Abe Ovadia

  • 7/16/2020 Kim Scott

    Known for her exceptional tone, intoxicating melodies and flawless techniques, Kim Scott is one of the most sought-after flutists in both the classical and jazz fields today.
    Now, the Branford Jazz Concert series crowd will have the chance of a lifetime to hear this global musical extraordinaire perform on the Branford Jazz Series stage on July 16th.
    Scott has an ever growing fan-base garnered from her continued presence on the performance scene and from her visibility as radio host of the nationally syndicated, two-hour jazz program, “Kim Scott’s Block Party Radio”, which airs weekly across the world. Kim is continuously and rapidly growing as a fresh image and sound for today’s contemporary jazz scene.
    With four albums to her credit, Scott has proven to be a mainstay in the field and promise for the future as a soloist and collaborator. Her recordings and collaborations include fellow jazz greats Jonathan Fritzen, James Lloyd, Jazmin Ghent, The Peet Project among others.
    Kim Scott

  • 7/23/2020 Isabella Mendes & Flavio Lira Quintet

    Bio coming soon. Isabella Mendes

  • 7/30/2020 New London Big Band

    What originally started as a dream- to be part of a big band, an epic one at that, comprised of 17 talented and energetic musicians which he could call his own- turned into a reality for New London Big Band leader and director Sean Nelson.
    While walking along the historic streets of New London in 2016, Nelson and a friend noticed a new establishment opening up soon for business, “The Social Bar & Kitchen”, which would feature burgers and beers. With his intriguing nature and curious mind working at its best and approaching the owner of the establishment, Nelson sold his idea of bringing in a big band to perform there. After a few phone calls to the best musicians he knew and collecting the sheet music to all his favorite tunes, “The Social” had its entertainment, Nelson had his band and the rest as they say “is history.”
    Now with an unlimited amount of passion and talent in performing tunes ranging from the Roaring 20’s to brand new compositions, to a mix of classic jazz standards, upbeat dance tunes, and original music by band members, and regularly features instrumental and vocal soloists, this all-star jazz group comes to Branford on July 30th as part of the Branford Series.
    New London Big Band

  • 8/6/2020 Matt Marshak

    A composer, bandleader, and educator, Matt Marshak is recognized as one of the most unique guitar players/vocalists in the industry today. And when not performing on stage, he demonstrates his unselfishness by contributing a big part of his musical life to educating children.
    With his mission of celebrating his love of music with the next generation, Matt will be sharing his passion with the Branford Jazz Series on August 6th.
    Growing up on the sounds of rock and blues, some of Marshak’s earliest influences were legends of their own rights – Jimi Hendrix, BB King, and Joe Satriani. Later it would be jazz guitarists such as George Benson and
    Larry Carlton who would influence Matt’s sounds. The late CD101.9 awarded Matt the title of “Best New Artist” and he started to get airplay in New York City and across the country. Soon after, Matt began touring the country and world performing at some of jazz’s biggest events. Tour stops included Spain’s Mallorca Jazz Fest, The Rehoboth Beach Jazz Festival, The Seabreeze Jazz Festival and many more.
    Matt Marshak

  • 8/13/2020 Jazmin Ghent

    From an accomplished music educator to one of the hottest national smooth jazz and gospel recording artists today, saxophone marvel Jazmin Ghent will grace her presence on the Branford Jazz Series stage on August 13th.
    Jazmin received a Bachelor’s Degree from Florida State University and a Master’s Degree from Tennessee State University before she began teaching music to students in grades K-5 for five years in Polk County Florida. In 2020, Jazmin was invited by the United States Embassy in Haiti to spend 7 days presenting music workshops to adults and children. She worked with musicians demonstrating the origin of jazz from standards to jazz of today. The week culminated with Jazmin headlining the International Jazz Festival in Port Au Prince, Haiti. She has also presented workshops in Syracuse, New York and Long Island, New York.
    Jazmin Ghent

  • 8/20/2020 Ronnie Smith

    From Europe to South America to the United States, music has swept guitarist Ronny Smith off of his feet and directed him toward being an incredible and popular force in the contemporary jazz industry.
    On Thursday, August 20th, this renowned artist will be spotlighted as part of the Branford Jazz Concert Series.
    A Grammy considered artist, Ronny left the University of Maryland as music education major to pursue the life as a guitarist and a United States Army Bandsman. He toured extensively throughout the world and has shared the stage with such notables as the Marvelettes, jazz drummer Bobby Durham, and trumpeter Donald Bryd. Ronny has recorded with some of the top session musicians of the Nashville and the California scene.
    Ronnie Smith

  • 8/27/2020 Special EFX Starring Chieli Minucci

    When the situation presents itself to ask the question “Who Chieli Minucci is”, the response to that is “Who Chieli Minucci isn’t”. Not only is he just a major force on the jazz scene and world music scene for over 35 years and not only is he just a gifted television and film composer but he is one of the industries most accomplished guitarists, composers and arrangers .
    On August 27th as part of the Branford Jazz Series, Minucci will be bringing his Grammy-nominated jazz fusion group SPECIAL EFX to close out the 2020 season, starting at 6:30 p.m.
    Recently releasing his 35th anniversary CD “All Stars”, Chieli & Special EFX’s previous release saw title track “Deep as the Night” win Billboard Magazine’s 2018 top honors “Best Song of the Year.”