Last summer, Jazz Aspen Snowmass wowed music fans with the lineup for its 23rd annual June Festival. The program featured headliners Jackson Browne, the Tedeschi-Trucks Band and the duo of Ben Harper and Charlie Musselwhite. Many pointed out that the roster of acts was more in line with Jazz Aspen’s Labor Day Festival, which tends toward styles of music with mass appeal. Just as many pointed out that the June Festival didn’t offer a whole lot of jazz.
This June, Jazz Aspen seems likely to wow listeners again — this time with sounds that are a lot closer to jazz. The headliners include Diana Krall, Tony Bennett and Trombone Shorty, all acts firmly rooted in jazz. Rounding out the lineup is Steve Winwood, the keyboardist and singer who came out of British classic rock.
The main portion of the June Festival is set for June 19 through 21, with headline shows in the Benedict Music Tent and two additional music stages as part of the free lawn party outside the tent. Bennett will perform June 28 in the tent in a show co-presented by the Aspen Music Festival. There also will be a series of small-venue performances at the JAS Cafe in the Little Nell hotel.
Tickets for the June Festival will go on sale Jan. 6 through the Jazz Aspen box office and the Belly Up box office. Tickets for Bennett will go on sale Jan. 6 at the Aspen Music Festival box office.
The festival opens June 19 with Trombone Shorty, who played on the main stage at the Labor Day Festival in 2012. The band is led by Troy Andrews, a trombonist and trumpeter who got his start playing in street brass bands in his hometown of New Orleans. In recent years, Trombone Shorty and his band, Orleans Avenue, have added funk, rock and hip-hop to their sound; guests on his past few records include Kid Rock, Lenny Kravitz, the Meters and Jeff Beck.
Krall will make her first Aspen appearance since 2006 on June 20. In past shows in Aspen, dating back to her local debut in 1999 in a Snowmass Village club, the singer-pianist has given her take on the traditional jazz piano combo. Her new show is built around the 2012 album “Glad Rag Doll,” which had Krall experimenting with new sounds and arrangements as she interpreted songs from the 1920s and ’30s.
Winwood is set to play June 21 in his first Aspen performance since 2007. The singer and keyboardist was a central part of the British rock bands Traffic and Blind Faith. As a solo artist, he had mainstream success with the 1980s albums “Back in the High Life” and “Roll With It.”
On June 28, Bennett, who first became popular in the 1950s as a jazz-pop vocalist singing tunes from the Great American Songbook, makes his first Jazz Aspen appearance since 2003. Antonia Bennett, his daughter, will be a special guest singer for the concert.
Surrounding the June Festival will be shows at the JAS Cafe in the Little Nell. Singer Rene Marie is set for June 26 and 27. Her performances will draw from her new album, “I Wanna Be Evil,” a tribute to vocalist Eartha Kitt. Singer Tierney Sutton will return to the JAS Cafe on July 2 and 3 performing her own tribute, “After Blue,” featuring interpretations of the music of Joni Mitchell.
Later shows in the JAS Cafe series will include Jamaican pianist Monty Alexander playing his jazz-reggae fusion, Harlem Kingston Express, Aug. 8 and 9; and guitarist John Pizzarelli on Aug. 15 and 16.