Ellis Marsalis


Twin Cities Jazz Festival 2016

Daily from June 23-25
Time Varies
Prices vary
Festivals, Jazz

Lowertown again will be ground zero for the 2016 Twin Cities Jazz Fest, presenting virtually every incarnation of jazz from a deep array of national and local artists in and around Mears Park, Union Station, and Kellogg Park. St. Paul clubs will also show off the richness and diversity of the thriving local jazz scene. Headliners include two members of New Orleans' illustrious Marsalis jazz family, Delfeayo (Thursday) and Ellis (Friday). At the other end of the age spectrum is 12(!)-year-old wunderkind pianist Joey Alexander (Thursday), whose stunning virtuosity and genuine feel for jazz earned him two Grammy nominations. A pair of ace guitarists will command the Mears Park stage Saturday — the mostly self-taught, elegant, and lyrical Russell Malone and acclaimed jazz classicist John Pizzarelli. Finally, stretching the definition of jazz are Michael Franti & Spearhead (Saturday), whose bristly R&B, reggae, hip-hop, soul, and rock hybrids are riddled with socio-political commentary and singalong choruses. Rounding out the festival lineup is a treasure chest of local jazz artists including trad pianist Butch Thompson, Afro-Cuban drummer Francisco Mela, guitarist Zacc Harris' Trio, and Jazz Women All-Stars. Free. Thursday-Saturday. Complete schedule at