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24. Jun. 2016

Come On, Baby, Let's Go Downtown

The Festival is here! This weekend's free Downtown Jazz concerts are always highly anticipated, and a highlight of the festival. Today, Guest Programmer Cole Schmidt tells us what he's looking forward to. (And quotes Neil Young.)

"Don't you be caught with a tear in your eye… Sure enough, they'll be selling stuff. " 


6 month old jazz baby, Silas. Son of a violinist, Meredith Bates (ElkHorn), and keyboard wizard, Chris Gestrin (Greasy G).
Unlikely to become an athlete. 

 That's right, a cheap and easy way for me to take a very precious and raw Neil Young lyric, and turn it into a blog post about 60 free performances worth seeing.

Come On, Baby, Let's Go Downtown – Neil Young:

Let's get started. 

Here's a slice of what's on the radar for the Georgia and Robson stages downtown.


Dal Richards Tribute - honouring a man who lived just short of 100 years, and entertained audiences with Jazz in Vancouver for almost 80 of them. 12:30pm, Georgia Stage, FREE

Copilots - one helluva musical drummer will be fronting and singing a set of ambitious psyched-out-improv informed rock and roll songs. 2:15pm, Georgia Stage, FREE 

Tom Wherrett's Evil Three - Tom isn't evil, but his music and his bandmates do a pretty good job. 1:30pm, Robson Stage, ALSO FREE

Cortex - Ken said these guys are cool. Probably cool. 3:45pm, Georgia Stage, SUPER FREE

Greasy G and the Poole Party featuring JACKITO! - don't let the dumb name turn you away. these guys are definitely serious and top choice for anybody who's throwing a birthday party and needs a band. 3pm, Robson Stage, FREE!

Dawn Pemberton - feeling lousy and boring? go see this show, it's funky and FREE at 5:15pm on the Georgia Stage

Flat Earth Society - "outside" big band from Belgium that came to Vancouver 10 years ago, and has a new recording that pays homage to Frank Zappa. Keeping music weird for over 15 years. FREE FLAT EARTH, 7:30pm Georgia Stage



Only a Visitor - thoughtfully arranged and well crafted songs; led by Robyn Jacob for a band of young dedicated jazzers. Noon, Robson Stage, FREE

Debra-Jean & the Dreams - a beautiful soul that'll be feeding us the classics alongside a sh*t hot band, which will quickly remind us that this party only comes once a year and we should probably try and locate the beer garden at the same time. 2:15pm, Georgia Stage, FREE

James Danderfer's Hummingbird Brigade - 16 musicians pumping out New Orleans-inspired funky good time. Probably have time for another? 3:45 pm, Georgia Stage, FREE (obviously, at this point)

ElkHorn - if you missed Tom Wherrett's Saturday performance, here's your second chance. This band has it together. Watch out for the release of a new recording in the months to come. FREE Elk. 5pm, Robson Stage.


That's it. Said more than I was suppose to. What else?.. Neil??...


"Full moon and a jumpin' tune, now you don't have to ask."

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