The 47th Annual Freihofer’s Saratoga Jazz Festival will return for a full two-day and two-stage exhilarating festival experience on Saturday, June 29 and Sunday, June 30 at the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. Featuring a roster of 22 musical groups and 10 festival debuts, the line-up is co-headlined by four premier contemporary artists: Lake Street Dive, Norah Jones, Laufey, and Samara Joy; alongside jazz and blues legends Stanley Clarke with his band N*4Ever, Terence Blanchard Sextet and Coco Montoya. Also highlighting the line-up is the next generation of jazz stars Yussef Dayes, Joey Alexander, Miguel Zenon, Tia Fuller, Theo Crocker, Helen Sung and Sara Caswell, and today’s most electrifying Afro-Cuban and funk bands Cory Henry, Cimafunk, The New Orleans Groove Masters and Pedrito Martinez Group. From jazz to roots, funk, blues, pop, indie and beyond, the festival will bring its signature blend of world-class artists and ensembles, solidifying its place as an international destination and a ‘must-stop’ on the 2024 festival trail.
“Our 2024 festival has a record number of female headliners, all among the most exciting musicians in the industry today. From young, new sensations like Laufey and Samara Joy, who are bringing jazz to the next generation, to beloved superstars like Norah Jones and Rachael Price, dynamo lead singer of Lake Street Dive, this year’s line-up is over the top with powerful female presence,” says Elizabeth Sobol, President and CEO of Saratoga Performing Arts Center. “As always, we are so grateful to Freihofer’s for making this great festival possible.”
“The 2023 festival was a smash success, and we are building off of that with high expectations for 2024,” says Danny Melnick, the festival producer and President of Absolutely Live Entertainment. “We have delivered another incredible lineup of new stars, celebrated legends and rhythms from around the world.”
Headliner Lake Street Dive will make their highly anticipated festival debut on Saturday with their spirited eclecticism and joyously soulful music. As heard on their critically acclaimed album. The Boston-bred band possesses a keen talent for combining sociopolitical commentary with immediately catchy pop gems. Returning following her triumphant festival debut in 2023 is “Silky-voiced rising jazz star” (New York Times) Samara Joy, a two-time GRAMMY winner and the second jazz performer in history to win the award for best new artist.
Returning by popular demand to headline the festival on Sunday is multi-GRAMMY winning singer and pianist Norah Jones, who played the festival in 2019. Named the top jazz artist of the 2000-2009 decade by Billboard, Norah has won nine GRAMMY Awards, including five for her 2002 solo debut, Away with Me.
“The one to watch” on Sunday’s line-up for her festival debut is Laufey, a 24-year-old Icelandic-Chinese singer-songwriter whose modern jazz sound has won her both a GRAMMY nomination and millions of fans on TikTok. Her new album Bewitched reached more than 5.7 million streams on its first day and set a Spotify record as the biggest debut for a jazz album. Most recently, Norah and Laufey collaborated on a new two-track single Christmas With You, which was released on November 10.
Music icons returning to the festival include jazz and blues legends Stanley Clarke with his exciting new band N*4Ever, which is a celebration of his long-time collaborator Chick Corea and their time together in Return to Forever; seven-time GRAMMY winner, two-time Oscar nominee and Opera composer Terence Blanchard with his Sextet, performing the music from his 2005 GRAMMY nominated album Flow, and blues guitar virtuoso and vocalist Coco Montoya. Representing the next generation of jazz talent on the stage is captivating composer and drummer Yussef Dayes, fan-favorite jazz pianist Joey Alexander who will celebrate his 21st birthday at the festival, 2021 Guggenheim Fellow and jazz pianist and composer Helen Sung, and GRAMMY-nominated jazz violinist Sara Caswell.
Highlighting the weekend is also today’s most electrifying Afro-Cuban and funk bands including progressive R&B artist Cory Henry, GRAMMY-nominated Afro-Cuban rockstar Cimafunk for his festival debut, The New Orleans Groove Masters featuring Herlin Riley, Jason Marsalis & Shannon Powell, GRAMMY-nominated Cuban percussionist Pedrito Martinez with his band for his fifth festival appearance, and hard-grooving, soulful crowd-pleaser Olatuja!, which reunites Alicia and Michael Olatuja in music.
In addition to two non-stop days of great music on two stages, fans can also enjoy a host of amenities including a new craft beer tasting village, in partnership with New York State Brewers Association, new and diverse food offerings, a fine arts and crafts fair, and artist CD signings. Guests are welcome to bring in their own food and beverages, as well as blankets, tents and lawn umbrellas. Parking for the event is free. Performances will begin at 11 a.m. on Saturday, June 29 and at 11:30 a.m. on Sunday, June 30.
“Proud to be title sponsor, Bimbo Bakeries and Freihofer’s Bread are looking forward to another year of great live jazz music in the spectacular Saratoga Performing Arts Center. See you there,” says Lorraine Hale, Vice President and General Manager, Bread, Buns and Rolls at Bimbo Bakeries USA.