Drum Roll, Please: Rains couldn’t wash away JazzFest Fun

Despite the heavy rains — and the subsequent cancellations — on Saturday morning, the remainder of JazzFest 2018 continued to the delight of many happy jazz fans.

Well …

That turned out to be a blast! I’m talking about the 35th annual Pensacola JazzFest.

Saturday, the rain stopped our early bands: Random Middle School Jazz Band, Tate High School Jazz Band, Tate High Vocal Jazz Ensemble and the Northwest Florida State College Jazz Ensemble.

If you get a chance to hear these ensembles, please do! They will not disappoint!

After the rain finally cleared, we were able to begin with our headliners. We got to start with the great Gene Bertoncini.

What a treat; alas, he was there only for the Saturday performance.

The Collegiate All-Star Big band was next, featuring one of our headliners, Andy Martin.

Pianist Michael Pellera from New Orleans was up next with his trio playing classic standards.

Smooth jazz artist Paula Atherton took the stage and had the crowd moving with her quartet.

The Scott Wilson Quintet was next playing a killer set of hip arrangements and originals … smoking!

Patrick Frost and his trio brought a very cool island jazz vibe to the festival … steel pans (not drums), conch shells and ukulele!

And … for those of you in town that left … for those of you in town that did not come out … shame …

At the end of the day, Pensacola was introduced to one of the hippest bands to play this area in a long time: The 4 Korners! You can ask those who were there … a musical journey!

Sunday, of course, was a much better day weatherwise … a little cold, but dry!

We had a great line-up of high school and college bands: Milton High Jazz Band, Pace High Jazz Band, Pensacola State College, Booker T. Washington Jazz Band and the University of West Florida Jazz Band. They all were awesome!

Don Snowden’s Big Band was there on day two to perform with headliner Andy Martin.

The headliners were as awesome on day two as they were on day one!

Although the weather throughout the weekend was not jazz friendly, the music was spot-on!

Get ready for JazzFest 2019!

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