Elvis Costello and the Imposters, with New Orleans legend Allen Toussaint, will be among the headliners at the Jazz Aspen Snowmass June Festival at Aspen's Rio Grande Park.
The festival bill, announced today, also features Costello's wife and JAS regular Diana Krall and her quartet. The festival, presented by new title sponsor Calamos Investments, returns to its tent at the park on June 22-25.
The festival opens Thursday, June 22 with a special program, "New Voices," headlined by the Jamie Cullum Trio, led by the English-born vocalist/pianist whose debut album, Twentysomething, sold 2 million copies. Opening for him will be Lizz Wright, an emerging star who presents a style that fuses jazz, soul, folk, blues and gospel, according to JAS. Her latest album, Dreaming Wide Awake, brings together songs associated with Neil Young, Fats Waller, the Beatles, Madonna and Herb Alpert.
Friday, June 23 brings one of the few American dates of the year for multiple Grammy winner Diana Krall, the jazz singer/pianist who has been a frequent JAS performer. (There will be no opening act on Friday). Her most recent triumph is her Christmas Songs album, which was released last year to critical acclaim and was the top-selling holiday album of 2005.
Since her recording debut in 1993, Krall has recorded nine albums distinctly rooted in the jazz piano/vocal tradition that have also enjoyed crossover success. Before Christmas Songs, her 2004 album, The Girl in the Other Room, was her first release to focus on her own songwriting, and includes six tunes co-written with her husband, Costello.
Costello will take the stage Saturday night with his band, the Imposters, as part of a tour with New Orleans' Toussaint that celebrates the music and heritage of the Crescent City. Costello burst onto the American scene in 1977 as a so-called New Wave rocker with tunes like "Alison" and "Red Shoes." His latest album, My Flame Burns Blue, features old and new songs in a big-band orchestra setting, recorded live at the North Sea Jazz Festival.
His previous album, Piano Jazz, captured his session with the legendary jazz pianist Marian McPartland. His next release, The River in Reverse, due out in May, is Costello's response to Hurricane Katrina and may be the first album recorded in New Orleans since the devastation.
Opening for Costello will be Delbert McClinton, whose career has run from coaching John Lennon on the subtleties of harmonica playing in 1962 to writing songs for greats like Emmylou Harris, to his duet with Bonnie Raitt, "Good Man, Good Woman," which won a Grammy in 1991. He fuses blues, rhythm and blues, and country honky-tonk.
Opening on Sunday will be funk master/alto saxophonist Maceo Parker. Sunday's closing headline artist has yet to be announced.