Syracuse Jazz Festival

The Syracuse Jazz Festival was an annual free admission outdoor summer music festival staged in Syracuse, New York. It was founded by jazz presenter Frank Malfitano and ran from 1982 to 2017.[1]

Syracuse Jazz Fest Crowd looking at the Stage.


Photo of the Syracuse Jazz Festival

Syracuse Jazz Fest was praised by the International Association for Jazz Education (IAJE), and previously ranked as the Central New York Region's "Best Music Festival". Syracuse Jazz Fest and was ranked as "One of the top five free jazz festivals in America". (Fest Press: A Guide To US Music Festivals)[2] Referred to by Down Beat and Jazz Times Magazines as "The Northeast's Largest Free Jazz Festival".[1]


Aretha Franklin headlined the 2015 festival,[3] which also featured Lake Street Dive, Wynton Marsalis & The Jazz At Lincoln Center Orchestra and Buckwheat Zydeco.[4]

Other artists and headliners who appeared and performed at Syracuse Jazz Fest include: Dizzy Gillespie, Ray Charles, Dave Brubeck, Sonny Rollins, Natalie Cole, Chaka Khan, Smokey Robinson, Gino Vannelli, Blood Sweat & Tears, Chuck Mangione, David Sanborn, Roberta Flack, Dionne Warwick, Diana Krall, Grover Washington Jr., Boz Scaggs, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, The Neville Brothers, Pete Fountain, Mark Murphy, Dr John, Little Jimmy Scott, Gregory Porter, Donovan, The Doobie Brothers, Ronnie Laws, Average White Band, Chico Hamilton, Fathead Newman, The Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Mose Allison, Les McCann, The Funk Brothers, Pat Metheny Group, Return to Forever, George Benson, Al Jarreau, Ivan Lins, Freddy Cole, New York Voices, Treme Brass Band, Larry Coryell, John McLaughlin, Manhattan Transfer, Kenny G, Lizz Wright, Cyrille Aimee, Jane Monheit, Yellowjackets, Jaco Pastorius Big band, Nancy Kelly, Brubeck Brothers, Count Basie Orchestra, Moscow State Jazz Orchestra, Bela Fleck & The Flecktones and The Brecker Brothers.[5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16][17][18][19][20]

Cafe Kubal Food Truck at Syracuse Jazz Fest
Smoothie food truck at Syracuse Jazz Fest
Greenwood Winery at the Syracuse Jazz Festival
Bacon Bandits at Syracuse Jazz Festival
I Love NY Booth at the Syracuse Jazz Fest


Frank Malfitano received a national "Jazz Hero Award" from the Jazz Journalists Association presented by JJA's Susan Brink.

Featured artists included Michael McDonald, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, Larry Coryell's Original Eleventh House, Raul Malo & The Mavericks, and an Jazz Fest All Star Tribute to legendary jazz vocalist Mark Murphy, featuring appearances by New York Voices, Randy Brecker and Nancy Kelly.


  1. ^ a b "What makes Sammy Run?". Syracuse New Times. March 11, 2005. Retrieved March 18, 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ "Syracuse Jazz Fest Productions Inc". CNY Arts. Retrieved March 18, 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ "Aretha Franklin to headline Syracuse Jazz Festival". March 3, 2015. Retrieved March 18, 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  4. ^ "Syracuse Jazz Fest 2015: Aretha Franklin, Wynton Marsalis Headline". March 11, 2015. Retrieved March 18, 2005. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ Bialczak, Mark (2 May 2006). "THE HISTORY OF JAZZ FEST SYRACUSE". syracuse. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  6. ^ Bialczak, Mark (28 June 2010). "Natalie Cole thrills crowd with duet at Syracuse Jazz Fest". syracuse. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  7. ^ Bialczak, Mark (26 March 2010). "Natalie Cole, Boz Scaggs to headline three-day Syracuse Jazz Fest". syracuse. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  8. ^ "Trombone Shorty at Jazz Fest: 5 facts about Sunday headliner". syracuse. 2016-06-29. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  9. ^ Bialczak, Mark (21 June 2012). "Syracuse Jazz Fest 2012: Gregory Porter, 8 p.m. Friday, June 22". syracuse. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  10. ^ Corrado, Katie (2012-06-23). "Syracuse jazz festival in full swing". WSTM. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  11. ^ "Doobie Brothers prove they're still fresh on opening night of Syracuse Jazz Fest". syracuse. 2013-07-05. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  12. ^ Baker, Chris (7 July 2013). "Review: Taylor Dayne closes Syracuse Jazz Fest with a shaky set". syracuse. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  13. ^ Bialczak, Mark (22 June 2011). "M&T Jazz Fest: Average White Band, 8 p.m. Friday". syracuse. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  14. ^ Bialczak, Mark (2007-04-13). "Wanted: Memories over 25 years of M&T Jazz Fest". syracuse. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  15. ^ Baker, Chris (2013-07-02). "Preservation Hall Jazz Band brings a taste of New Orleans to Jazz Fest". syracuse. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  16. ^ Mulcahy, Matt (2011-05-02). "Syracuse Jazz Fest announces musical artists for two-day festival". WSTM. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  17. ^ Linhorst, Stan (2009-06-28). "Huge crowd turns out to hear Kenny G at final night of Syracuse Jazz Fest". syracuse. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  18. ^ Bialczak, Mark (2012-06-23). "Cyrille Aimee, Diego Figueiredo bring distinctive international touch". syracuse. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  19. ^ Nave, Keith (2007-07-02). "Jaco Pastorius Big Band and Guests". syracuse. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
  20. ^ "Syracuse Jazz Fest 2014 lineup announced featuring B.B. King and more". syracuse. 2014-04-15. Retrieved 2020-11-25.

External linksEdit

Official website