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5:08 AM Wed, Nov. 21st

Jazz Summit gives tribute to New Orleans on Aug. 24

Courtesy photos

Courtesy photos

The Prescott Jazz Summit is gearing up for its big show of the season next weekend, featuring Mike Vax and The Great American Jazz Band performing a tribute to the music and heritage of New Orleans.

Vax, who is the director of the Prescott Jazz Summit, said he expects a great crowd for this show. The shows at the Highlands Center got good crowds, though the venue can’t seat as many people as the Elks Theatre can. The courthouse plaza shows get good-sized crowds too.

“There’s still a lot of people in Prescott that like what we do and there’s not much of a jazz scene here anymore. They’re sort of starving for it a little bit,” he said. “It’s going to be a great New Orleans show. It’s going to be all music that came from New Orleans, everything from the oldest tunes from the early 1900s to later on.”

The show begins at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 24. Tickets are $22 for general admission, $18 for seniors and $35 for opera box seats, and can be purchased online at www.prescottelkstheater.com, by calling 928-777-1370 or at the door one hour prior to the performance.

The show will have performances by Vax on trumpet and vocals, Scott Whitfield on trombone and vocals, Tony Vacca on saxophone, Jack Petersen on piano and guitar, Howard Alden on banjo, guitar and vocals, Selwyn Reams on bass and tuba, and Cleve Huff on drums.

Vax said he will have historical anecdotes about a lot of the people who were prominent in the New Orleans jazz scene.

“People who don’t know about some of the older New Orleans people are going to find out some interesting stuff about how the music got started there and the people that were there at the beginning,” he said. “When I lived in New Orleans in the 1970s, a lot of the people that were there in the beginning were still alive. I got to play with them and I got to hang with them and I got to ask them questions about what it was really like in the early days of jazz. I have firsthand information that most people don’t really know.”

The Elks Theatre and Performing Arts Center is located at 117 E. Gurley St. For more information, visit www.prescottjazz.com.