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Tuesday, October 6, 2009

World Class Jazz Returns to Roswell this Weekend

Still waiting until the last minute to make some weekend travel plans? Then you are in luck, as 18 world class tradition, mainstream and Latin jazz artists will join musical forces at the fourth annual Pecos Valley/Roswell Jazz Festival Friday-Sunday (October 9-11, 2009) in Roswell.

Jazz musician and composer, Dr. Roger Dickerson, a Hurricane Katrina refugee, came to Roswell to stay with his Army Band mate, Frank Schlatter. From a series of local events, Dickerson developed the Pecos Valley Jazz & Arts Festival, now known as the Roswell Jazz Festival.

“Music is an integral part of New Mexico's culture,” said Michael Cerletti, Secretary of the New Mexico Tourism Department, “and we have no better messenger than the Roswell Jazz Festival. New Mexicans and their visitors will experience a golden showcase of the kind of music that knows no bounds. The folks in Roswell are to be commended for their unlimited support of this incredible event.”

Festival returnees are Dickerson; Eddie Erickson, banjo (Los Angeles); Tom Fischer, clarinet (New Orleans); Nicki Parrot, bass, (New York City); Dan Barrett, trombone (Los Angeles); Randy Sandke, trumpet (New York City) Michael Francis, keyboards and the Music Director of the Festival (Lincoln); George Aiuvalasit, harmonica (Las Cruces); Ricky Malichi, drums (El Paso), Chris Beaty, saxophone (Portales), and Ken Tuttle, trumpet (Roswell). Festival newcomers are Harry Allen, tenor sax (New York City); Wilfred Hernandez, Latin percussion (El Paso); Chuck Redd, vibes (Washington D.C.); Ross Sportiello, piano (New York City); Eric Unsworth, bass (El Paso); Curt Warren, guitar (El Paso); and Aaron Weinstein, violin (New York City).

The free, opening concert is Friday, noon-1 p.m., on the steps of the Old County Courthouse on Main Street.

Club venues Friday (limit seating) include Peppers Lounge, 5-7 p.m. (tickets $10); Pecos Flavors Winery, 5-7 p.m. (ticket $25); and Sally Port Inn and Suites, 7:30-11:30 p.m. (adult tickets $25, student tickets $10).

Club venue Saturday is Sally Port Inn and Suites, 7:30-11:30 p.m.

Venues Sunday are Pueblo Auditorium, Third & Kentucky Streets, 10:30 a.m., (Worship in Jazz, featuring 12 festival artists and keyboard solo by Music Director Michael Francis.); and the Anderson Museum of Contemporary Art, 2-5 p.m., with Nicki Parrot, Ricki Malichi, Curt Warren, Aaron Weinstein and friends (tickets $25).

Festival spokesperson Paula Grieves says, “We have learned from previous Festivals that club settings are the most popular, and for 2009, we have chosen to continue partnerships with local businesses for the Friday night club dates at Peppers and the Pecos Flavors Winery. This year we’ve chosen to stay with two larger-setting club dates on Friday and Saturday at the Sally Port Inn and Suites. One central site with four different sets of music is a very exciting way to be up close and personal and to listen to various combinations of artists playing different types of jazz. We think this is a great approach.”

Tickets for the 2009 Roswell Jazz Festival may be purchased at the Roswell Convention Center (1-888-767-9355 or 575-624-7704. The Festival Office at the First Presbyterian Church may also be contacted, 575-622-4910, ext.13.

For more information visit http://www.pecosvalleyjazz.com/

For more information about other top events in New Mexico, please visit the New Mexico top events page at Top Events USA at http://www.topeventsusa.com/state-events-new-mexico.html