Get Your Summer Groove On While You Still Can

Entertainment — By on August 25, 2015 at 5:07 am

Cover: Singer Diana Krall. Inside photo: Erykah Badu.

A Wrap Up

By Angela Johnson

As summer’s end draws near and fall prepares to make her entrance, I reflect on the vast variety of eclectic free music available in the city.  Summer 2015 in Greater Los Angeles has a lot still going on through about the second or third week of September. There is plenty of time left to get your groove on for free or nominal fee.

Music/arts/culture wise, there was a cornucopia of free outdoor festivals and events at the top of the season. From Downtown Los Angeles to the Santa Monica Pier and a few spots in between: Pershing Square Downtown Stage, Fig at 7th (Figueroa at 7th, Downtown L.A.), Twilight Concerts at Santa Monica Pier, Summer and Music (Downtown Long Beach), Redondo Beach Summer of Music Festival, Wine and Jazz at Hollywood and Highland, Central Avenue Jazz Festival, The Watts Towers Festival,  Leimert Park Book Festival, Levitt Pavilions (Los Angeles and Pasadena) and the California African American Museum. Some of the aforementioned are going mid-September, so check local listings.

Trombone Shorty.

Some of it I caught a great deal of it I missed. I regret having slept on a fraction of that, namely the surprising performance of young jazz titan Kamasi Washington, my new tenor saxophone hero, during the Central Avenue Jazz Festival. There was a great article in the L.A Weekly Summer Dining Issue that I had the pleasure of reading. I did see him do a set at Wine and Jazz/Hollywood and Highland. That was amazing. So I’m not too sad.

Gregory Porter.

For all “good music” enthusiasts who can’t decide whether they love jazz or soul the most, this week at the Hollywood Bowl is for you: Soul/Jazz/R&B dynamo Erykah Badu, August 30; sultry, soulful jazz vocalist Diana Krall with Gregory Porter, whose smooth tenor voice simultaneously sooths and energizes, on August 28 and 29; and Trombone Shorty will bring the funk and jazz with hip hop swag and NOLA rhythms on top, underneath and all throughout on August 26. While The Bowl is a high-dollar venue, there are some cheap seats to be had and the HD big screen monitors make up for the difference.

Rock and roll royalty Jefferson Starship will perform at the Twilight Concerts August 27, followed up by the Legendary Rebirth Brass Band with Miles Mosley and the West Coast Get Down. I guarantee this is a show I will not be missing. Culver City’s Fiesta La Ballona: Party in the Park will be August 28-30; Summer Night Concerts at the Japanese American National Museum, August 27; and California African American Museum will host its 5th Annual Shorts Showcase, August 30. All these are free, free, free, free. So take advantage while you still can. Don’t forget that for more information, the Internet is your friend.

Angela Johnson is a veteran Journalist, Editor and Publicist. She was a well known Editor and Journalist for the LA Watts Times and we are pleased she is a contributor to The Scoop LA.

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