Jazz on the Chesapeake

Jazz on the Chesapeake is bringing the sweet sounds of music to your home with its virtual stage at Chesapeakemusic.org.

First up, is the amazing Monty Alexander. Considered one of the top five jazz pianists ever, Monty’s musical expression combines elements of the blues, gospel, calypso, and reggae. Then, trumpeter/vocalist Bria Skonberg will grace the virtual stage. The Canadian songwriter is steadily earning the reputation as Louis Armstrong’s modern-day counterpart.

Bria was slated to join Monty as a headliner at this year’s Monty Alexander Jazz Festival. Held annually over Labor Day weekend, the 2020 festival has been canceled.

“Though we may not be together physically, we can still enjoy the music together,” says Joe Fischer, Chairman of the Jazz Committee Chesapeake Music.

Enjoy a curated selection of past festival favorites, including Dominick Farinacci, the Anderson Twins (Will and Peter), Chuck Redd, and many more. Patrons can sign up via Chesapeake Music to receive email notifications whenever a new artist performance is available to watch.

Settle in on the couch and tune in to Alexander’s lively show in Beloise, Switzerland.

“Believe me, you will be impressed with this 59-minute production,” Fischer says, referring to the musician’s performance. “We’re thankful for your patience and support during this challenging time for the performing arts.”

Bria Skonberg is a remarkable force in the jazz scene, known for her “trad fusion” sound and steadily earning the reputation as Louis Armstrong’s modern-day counterpart.

“We’re so delighted to have Bria join us on our virtual stage,” says Joe. “She’s got such an engaging personality and the musical talent to match!”

Bria’s specialty is old jazz – proven by her solid repertoire of 1900s to 1940s tunes – but her songs draw influence from a variety of genres, from blues to Dixieland to pop.

“I like to be influenced by what’s around me,” she said in a 2017 interview with Chesapeake Music. “That’s jazz. You listen and react.”

Described by Vanity Fair as “a millennial shaking up the jazz world,” Bria’s rising-star status was confirmed when she won the 2017 Juno Award for Jazz Vocal Album of the Year for her 2016 crowd-funded album, Bria.

“Basically, it’s a Canadian Grammy,” she explained. “It’s been a wild ride.”

The trailblazing trumpeter has performed at more than 100 festivals around the world, including New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival, Newport Jazz Festival, and Montreal Jazz Festival, to name a few.

She graced the Avalon Theatre stage a few years ago, when she kicked off the 2017 Monty Alexander Jazz Festival with an expressive and lively performance. She fondly recalls her experience during her introduction to her virtual show.

“Driving into such a cute little city and having probably the best crab cakes I’ve ever had in my life,” she says, with a laugh. “And then taking that energy to the stage and meeting your fantastic, wonderful audience.”

“We will undoubtedly be bringing Bria back to Easton for a live performance as soon as possible, but for now, let’s enjoy her wonderful music as best, and as safely, as we can,” Joe says.

Bria takes the virtual stage with an introduction and engaging selection of songs that includes her newest music video “So Is The Day.”

To start listening, visit Chesapeakemusic.org. Jazz on the Chesapeake is a program of Chesapeake Music.

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Allison Rogers



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