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[whitespace] Horn of Plenty: Trumpeter Roy Hargrove has cemented his reputation as one of the leading lights of a new generation in jazz.

Big-City Jazz

Roy Hargrove leads a star-packed lineup into San Jose for annual jazz festival August 9-13

By Al Roberts

CAN A YOUNG LION still be young once he turns 30? Trumpeter Roy Hargrove, born in 1969, has passed the chronological milestone, but he's still the nearest thing we have to a savior of straight-ahead jazz in the deep current of improvisation begun by the bebop greats of the 1940s and '50s. With maturity has come confidence: Hargrove has explored Cuban jazz on Habana, and his newest album, Moment to Moment, dares the sometimes perilous shoals of "romantic" jazz, complete with lush string orchestration.

For his appearance at this year's AT&T San Jose Jazz Festival (which announced its lineup this week), Hargrove will bring his quintet to the Main Stage Aug. 13 as one of the top attractions as the annual free (with a couple of exceptions) event.

Joining Hargrove on the festival's last day (a Sunday) will be Cuban piano star Gonzalo Rubalcaba; the Caribbean Jazz Project, with Dave Samuels, Dave Valentin and Steve Khan; and a two-headed ensemble led by vocalist Kevin Mahogany and guitarist Larry Coryell, one of the leading lights of the jazz-fusion movement.

The Main Stage performers for Saturday (Aug. 12) will be Richie Cole's Alto Madness Orchestra; the New York salsa experts of the Bronx House; the Jazz Times Superband (with Randy Brecker, Bob Berg, Dennis Chambers and David Kikoski); and fusion favorites Hiroshima.

The big names attract the big crowds to Plaza de Cesar Chavez, but the Jazz Festival sprawls all over downtown San Jose; this year's edition has assembled more than 100 groups on 12 stages. A large number of local performers will be showcased over the weekend. The Ray Brown Big Band and Wally's Swing World will anchor the Big Band Stage. Brenda Boykin, Rusty Zinn and organist Duke Jethro are featured at the Blues Stage. At Gordon Biersch, fans of the Wally Schnalle Band can catch one of the area's most active local jazz troupes. One of the region's finest gospel choirs--the Oakland Interfaith Gospel Choir--will anchor the Gospel Stage.

Although the majority of the action takes place over the weekend, the festival gets under way Aug. 9 with an opening-night gala headlined by San Francisco fluegelhorn master Dmitri Matheny and his group (this event costs $16). On Aug. 10, Lavay Smith and Her Red Hot Skillet Lickers perform at Music in the Park, a series of outdoor shows that dovetails with the festival this week.

One of the stalwarts of the California Latin jazz scene, conguero Poncho Sanchez, will perform Aug. 11 at 5:30pm, also in Plaza de Cesar Chavez. Auxillary events include an All Star Jazz Jam Aug. 12 at the Montgomery Theater (with a $10 donation) starting at 8:30pm, and a Jazz Mass at St. Joseph Cathedral on Aug. 12 at 4:30pm and Aug. 13 at 11:30pm.

The weekend performances run noon to 8pm, and admission is free, so arrive early or be prepared to maneuver through some very large crowds to get a glimpse at the performers on the Main Stage.

The 11th annual AT&T San Jose Jazz Festival takes place Aug. 9-13 in Plaza de Cesar Chavez and throughout downtown San Jose. Admission is free, except for two benefits. For complete lineups, call 408. 288.7577 or go online at www.sanjosejazz.org.

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From the June 1-7, 2000 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 2000 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

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