The ‘J’ in July is for Jazz, Baby!

Jazz music may not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think about UMass Amherst, but the state university has a long and storied history with the art form. This month UMass is celebrating its jazz roots with the annual Jazz in July concert series. UMass has one of the oldest higher-ed jazz programs in the nation. Founded in the ’70s by composer Frederick Tillis, the program attracted legendary jazz performers such as Max Roach, Dizzy Gillespie, Ella Fitzgerald, Tito Puente, and Ray Brown. And the jazz greats keep coming.

Don’t miss this Thursday’s Jazz in July faculty concert. Performers will include the brilliant double-bassist Avery Sharpe and jazz vocalist extraordinaire Sheila Jordan, as well as the equally stellar Winard Harper, Earl MacDonald, Jeff Holmes, Barry Ries, Bob Ferrier, Bruce Diehl, Genevieve Rose, Ted Sullivan, and Stephen Page.

Jazz in July Faculty Concert: Thursday, July 13, 7:30 p.m. $15-$20. UMass Amherst, Fine Arts Center, Bezanson Recital Hall. (413) 545-4161,,

— Kristin Palpini

Author: Advocate Staff

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