Clifford Brown Jazz Festival

The 29th annual Jazz Festival in Rodney Square, will take place over 4 nights starting Wednesday, June 21st.

Below is a list of the festival’s lineup which includes; Grammy Award nominees, international and local artists.


2017 Clifford Brown Tribute Band with Gerald Chavis

  • The 2017 Clifford Brown Tribute Band consists of some of the most sought-after musicians in the Delaware region. The collective experiences and work history of the band includes performances and recordings from Rock legend Mick Jagger to R&B super group Boyz II Men. Notable performers include saxophonist Jaleel Shaw, a Philadelphia native currently residing in New York City. Jaleel is one of the last students of the renowned teacher, Robert ‘Boysie’ Lowery, who is best known for teaching Clifford Brown. Shaw is recognized by many jazz publications as one of the top saxophonists on the scene today.

Alicia Olatuja

  • Praised by The New York Times as “a singer with a strong and luscious tone and an amiably regal presence on stage”. Alicia first came into the national spotlight in 2013, while performing as the featured soloist with the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir at President Obama’s second inauguration. Shortly thereafter, she assembled her own jazz-based ensemble and recorded her first solo album.

Theo Croker 

  • Trumpeter, composer, and arranger Theo Croker is an adventurous musician whose adept skills find him at home whether playing standards, swinging post-bop, or more groove-oriented electric jazz. A native of Leesburg, Florida, Croker is the grandson of the late great jazz trumpeter Doc Cheatham. He began playing trumpet around age 11 after hearing Cheatham play in New York City and by his teens was studying music at the Douglas Anderson School of the Arts in Jacksonville, Florida. In 2009 he released his sophomore album, “In the Tradition,” which paid tribute to Cheatham. Croker released his third solo album, the Dee Dee Bridgewater-produced “Afro Physicist” on OKeh Records.

Danilo Pérez Trio

  • Pianist, composer, educator and social activist, Danilo Pérez is among the most influential and dynamic musicians of our time. In 1993, Pérez turned his focus to his own ensembles and recording projects, releasing eight albums as a leader, earning Grammy and Latin Grammy nominations for Central Avenue (1989), Motherland (2000), Across The Crystal Sea (2008). Pérez, who served as Goodwill Ambassador to UNICEF, has received awards for his musical achievements, activism and social work efforts.

Arturo O’Farrill/African-Cuban Jazz Ensemble (Octet)

  • The pianist, composer, educator and founder and artistic director of the nonprofit Afro Latin Jazz Alliance, Arturo was born in Mexico and grew up in New York City. His debut album with the AfroLatinJazz Orchestra, “Una Noche Inolvidable,” earned a first Grammy Award nomination in 2006. He has studied and worked with a wide spectrum of artists including Dizzy Gillespie, Steve Turre, Freddy Cole, The Fort Apache Band, Lester Bowie, Wynton Marsalis and Harry Belafonte.

High and Mighty Brass Band 

  • There’s a reason that musical trailblazers from Galactic to DJ Logic have recently chosen to collaborate with High and Mighty Brass Band. This dynamic crew has the unique ability to combine classic New Orleans funk and R&B with more modern Afro-beat and hip-hop influences.

Frederic Yonnet

  • Originally from France, Yonnet is regarded as one of the most talented and innovative harmonica players on the international music scene today. His technical mastery of his instrument — along with innovative collaborations and solo projects — has earned him the recognition as one of the greatest harmonica players in the world.

Wilmington Youth Jazz Band 

  • The Wilmington Youth Jazz Band is a dynamic jazz music education program which is open to young musicians aged 10 and up in Delaware and the surrounding regions. Founded in 2004 by renowned saxophonist Fostina Dixon-Kilgoe, the WYJB has performed at various venues such as the Kennedy Center on the Millennium Stage in Washington, D.C., the Clifford Brown Jazz Festival and The Grand.

Sumi Toonoka

  •  Sumi Tonooka has been called a “fierce and fascinating composer and pianist” (Jazz Times), “provocative and compelling” (New York Times), and “continually inventive, original, surprising, and a total delight” (Cuadranos de Jazz, Madrid). Tonooka has developed a body of work that surprises and delights audiences – piling up accolades from jazz writers and fellow musicians.


  • Her 2014 album “The Lagos Music Salon” landed at No. 1 on U.S. jazz charts.  The album, which features special guests Angelique Kidjo, Common and Ambrose Akinmusire, draws material from the tropical city Lagos, Nigeria’s boastful cosmopolitanism.

Regina Carter “Simply Ella” 

  • Regina Carter is the foremost jazz violinist of her generation and a MacArthur Foundation “genius grant” recipient. Marking the 100th birthday of a musical legend, Regina’s upcoming album and touring program celebrates the incomparable Ella Fitzgerald – the source of Regina’s musical inspiration.
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