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Lloyd-Hussain-Lage Trio Live From Healdsburg

Saturday, September 26, 2020 @ 10:00 pm - 11:30 pm

Healdsburg Jazz presents the world premiere of Charles Lloyd, Zakir Hussain and Julian Lage playing together as a trio for the first time, to be streamed live around the world.

The group will play together in a safe, socially distanced fashion without an in-person audience, captured by state-of-the-art sound and video equipment, and beamed to a worldwide audience.

For a minimum $15 donation, viewers will have 72-hour access to the concert after the live performance, which starts at 7 pm (Pacific Time).

On Saturday, September. 26, Healdsburg Jazz presents the world premiere of Charles Lloyd, Zakir Hussain and Julian Lage playing together as a trio for the first time, to be streamed live around the world. Each musician will be driving to the intimate wine country town in Northern California for this extraordinary real-time live show. Saxophonist/flautist Charles is heading up from Santa Barbara, tabla-master Zakir from Marin County, and guitarist Julian all the way from Nashville, Tenn.

The group will play together in safe, socially distanced fashion without an in-person audience from the Paul Mahder Gallery,  captured by state-of-the-art sound and video equipment and beamed to a world-wide audience. For a minimum $15 donation, viewers will have 72-hour access to the recorded concert after the live performance, which starts at 7 p.m. Pacific Time.

The coronavirus pandemic may have shut down the Healdsburg Jazz Festival this summer, but jazz fans around these parts should know by now, after 22 years of festivals, that Founder and Artistic Director Jessica Felix is capable of pulling a rabbit out of her hat. And so she has again with this superstar trio. It will be her last concert as Artistic Director of the festival, as she is retiring on Sept. 30.

“Charles and Julian had been scheduled to perform during this year’s festival,” Jessica says of the early-June 10-day jazz blast that had to be canceled. “Knowing we still have NEA funding available, I really wanted these three longtime friends of mine to be here and perform the kind of live concert that few other festivals have attempted to do during the pandemic. Most are rebroadcasting past shows, but I wanted to offer Charles, Zakir and Julian the opportunity to play together in a safe venue. I am very honored they’ll be here on this emotional weekend.”

The concert will have an additional special meaning because it completes a circle that began in 2000 during the second Healdsburg Jazz Festival. It was there that Charles Lloyd, making his festival debut, invited a 12-year-old kid from Santa Rosa to sit in with the band on guitar. That kid was Julian Lage. Julian went on to become a real Healdsburg stalwart, playing 12 festivals, maturing on the way into the superstar he is today. For their parts, Charles performed at eight festivals and Zakir four.

Charles Lloyd: “I can feel in my bones that it will be an evening filled with wonder, and it is an honor to be able to give this concert as a final tribute to Jessica Felix who has been an ally and friend for many years. Her contribution to the Healdsburg community cannot be measured with words.”

Zakir Hussain: “I am looking forward to this with great excitement. Special thanks to Jessica for inviting us. The Healdsburg Jazz Festival always inspires artists to exceed expectations. It is always special to perform there.”

Julian Lage: “This is the final production for Jessica, so it’s such an honor to be participating in it. She’s given so much of herself for so many people with so much love and respect. My goodness, the festival would not exist without her. And my development wouldn’t have happened without her. The people I’ve met through the festival, the standards I was raised with. I am a child of this movement that she spearheaded. To be part of her world has been a gift.”

To audiences familiar with the Healdsburg Jazz Festival, a trio of this nature, a musical aggregation of spectacular potential, would not be out of the ordinary.  It’s just what Jessica has done amid presenting hundreds of acts in her 22 years here. But this year the trio happens to be the only case of musicians appearing in Healdsburg to play a show of this caliber — the rabbit she pulled out of her hat. And it will be accessible to thousands upon thousands of viewers.

At 82, Charles Lloyd still seems unstoppable. This will be the sax legend’s first concert of 2020 and one can only imagine the music bursting to get out of him.
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Charles, Zakir and Julian have collaborated before, but not altogether in a formal setting, so this performance constitutes a world premiere. Charles and Zakir first played together at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco shortly after the 9/11 attacks in New York. As Charles tells it, “The afternoon of our concert, someone had threatened to bomb the Golden Gate Bridge. Later Zakir said that ‘music is about creating bridges, not destroying them.’ ” Charles affirms that the music they made that day “was deep and joyful, a feeling that continues to this day when they play together.” In 2004, Charles and Zakir formed a trio, Sangam, with the great drummer Eric Harland, releasing one self-titled album and playing at the 2008 and 2011 Healdsburg Jazz Festivals.

It’s always dicey to call someone “the greatest in the world” at something, but that appellation is pretty much the consensus view of Zakir Hussain, whose skills on the tabla are very close to being supernatural. Zakir says he is looking forward to the upcoming trio show “with great excitement.” As he tells it, “It is a singular honor to have master Lloyd select me to perform with him at the prestigious Healdsburg Jazz Fest. I also look forward to working with the fabulous Julian Lage.”

With 10 acclaimed records under his belt and a resume playing on dozens more, Julian is a wildly eclectic musical spirit recognized as the top guitarist of his generation. He is primarily a jazz guitarist but a master of many styles, from bluegrass to classical to Hindustani, each of which he weaves together seamlessly. Julian, who had been touring with Charles in the months before the pandemic and is on Charles’ recent album 8: Kindred Spirits (Live from the Lobero), had only experienced playing with Zakir while sitting in at the Charles Lloyd and Friends 80th Birthday Celebration that anchored the 2018 Healdsburg Jazz Festival.  A brief encounter but enough for Julian to recognize Zakir as an “absolutely radiant being.”


Saturday, September 26, 2020
10:00 pm - 11:30 pm


Buffalo, NY United States + Google Map

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