The Santa Cruz Advocates for the Arts will hold a day-long tribute to jazz great Charles Mingus with the Charles Mingus Hometown Music Festival on April 26, 2014 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. The music festival is free and open to the public and will take place at the First Fidelity Bank Plaza, 825 N. Grand Ave., across from the former entrance to the all-black Army camp, Camp Little, where Mingus' father was stationed when Mingus was born on April 22, 1922.
The festival will open with Mariachi Apache, an award-winning band from Nogales High School followed by the Nogales High School Jazz Band. Southern Arizona's national award-winning big band, the Tucson Jazz Institute Ellington Band, will perform music by Mingus, Ellington and others and they will perform several tunes with guest bassist Ray Drummond who appeared at the first Mingus festival in 1993. A smaller ensemble, the Concord Ensemble from the Tucson Jazz Institute will play a few tunes with Drummond, as well. Also on the bill is Nogales native Grupo Manteca and the Redhouse Brothers Band. View the festival performers' biographies >>
There will be vendors with food and drink, and a beer garden. Chairs will be provided but concertgoers are also invited to bring their own chairs and blankets.
On Friday, April 25, at The Mingus Invitational Jazz Festival, guest artist Ray Drummond and other educators will work with the students in jazz bands from schools from across southern Arizona.
The festival is made possible by grants from the Arizona Commission on the Arts, Port Devanning Services, Young Audiences of Santa Cruz County, the Tucson Jazz Music Foundation and Santa Cruz County.
The original "Jazz on the Border: The Mingus Project," was a program of the Tucson Jazz Society and the Nogales-Santa Cruz County Chamber of Commerce and was funded through a Collaborative Initiative Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts and ACA and was held 21 years ago, in 1993.
Ray Drummond also will appear at the Sunday Night Jazz Jam at the Viscount Suite Hotel, 4855 E. Broadway at 7 p.m. Ticket information on this and other jazz events in Tucson can be found at www.tucsonjazz.org. Drummond also will hold a Master Class at the University of Arizona School of Music on Thursday, April 24.