Diego Joaquin Ramirez
Diego Joaquin Ramirez & SULA will perform June 17 at the University of the District of Columbia. (Courtesy of Diego Joaquin Ramirez via Facebook)

Officials for the DC Jazz Festival have announced the three emerging bands chosen as the 2017 DC Jazz Prix finalists.

Each of the bands will perform Thursday, June 15 in a “free” concert as part of the festival’s second annual DC Jazz Prix finals at the University of the District of Columbia Theater of the Arts.

The bands slated to perform include:

•    New York’s AMP Trio featuring Tahira Clayton (Addison Frei, piano; Perrin Grace, bass; Matt Young, drums; and featuring Tahira Clayton, vocals);

•    New York’s Diego Joaquin Ramirez & SULA (Diego Joaquin Ramirez, drums/composer; Michael Mayo, vocals; Wayne Tucker, trumpet; Asaf Yuria, tenor saxophone; Caili O’Doherty, piano/keyboards; and Tamir Shmerling, electric and acoustic bass) and

•    Durham, North Carolina’s Ernest Turner Trio (Ernest Turner, piano; Lance Scott, bass; Michael Ode, drums)

Each band will receive the high degree of visibility inherently associated with a major jazz festival stage, competing at the DCJazzPrix finals at UDC, and the audience response will be a significant factor in the jury’s ultimate determination of the winner.

The winning ensemble will be awarded a $15,000 cash prize and a yearlong technical assistance association with the DC Jazz Festival, designed to encourage their professional development and provide business support. Additionally, the winning band will perform a main stage 2018 DC Jazz Festival engagement.

“It is exciting to help identify and promote the careers of emerging jazz artists committed to the creative and professional development of their very own excellent bands,” said Sunny Sumter, the festival’s executive director. “DCJazzPrix is unique in that it recognizes the unique jazz ritual of the band, in the true democratic tradition of jazz. It encourages jazz artists to concentrate on band development and personnel stability, increase performance opportunities and business acumen, and broaden their collective output.”

For more information, visit www.dcjazzfest.org.

WI Guest Author

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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