The Virginia Blues and Jazz Festival Celebrates its 10th Anniversary

The Virginia Blues and Jazz Festival will take place this weekend at Garth Newel Music Center in Hot Springs. Chris Williams is the Executive Director of Garth Newel.

“This is our tenth anniversary. The Virginia Blues and Jazz Festival started ten years ago, and over its history we’ve had the same kind of format. It’s a three-day event. We start with a Friday night concert indoors in our Concert Hall. Saturday is an outdoor afternoon on our hillside, and then Sunday we come back inside. This time it’s a New Orleans-themed brunch on Sunday at 11.

To celebrate its 10th anniversary, the Virginia Blues and Jazz festival will include a wide variety of music.

“The Friday night and Sunday concerts are both real straight ahead jazz. Bria Skonberg on Friday night—she’s a trumpeter/singer with a five-piece band. Then on Sunday afternoon, Delfayo Marsalis, one of the famous Marsalis family from New Orleans. He has a six-piece band that he’s bringing.”

“On Saturday we cover a little more territory. We cover everything from traditional acoustic blues, kind of Piedmont blues, to Chicago-style to the Band of Heathens, which is almost like a jam band from Austin, TX. It’s bluesy, it’s routesy, but it’s not traditional blues in that sense.”

The festival begins at 7:30 Friday evening with the Bria Skonberg Quintet. Saturday’s performances will start at 12:30pm with Bert Carlson joined by Charlottesville’s reggae group the Guano Boys. After that, Phil Wiggins and the Chesapeake Sheiks will take the stage. That will be followed by the Cash Box Kings and Band of Heathens.

On Sunday, there will be a New Orleans jazz brunch with the Delfeayo Marsalis Sextet from 11am to 2pm.

For more information, visit, or call Garth Newel at 877-558-1689.

“It’s a great way to experience this music in a very personal, relaxed format. We provide great food, really really fine production value, and make sure that the audience experience is really one to remember.”

Story By

Megan Moriarty

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