Thursday, August 2, 2018

Big Band Jazz Coming to Yerba Buena Gardens

David Hardiman’s San Francisco All Start Big Band (from the YBGF Facebook event page)

This weekend the Yerba Buena Gardens Festival (YBGF) will be offering a performance that will likely appeal to those who take their jazz listening seriously. The performers will be the members of David Hardiman’s San Francisco All-Star Big Band. This group was formed by David Hardiman after he moved to San Francisco, where he taught at the City College of San Francisco. He had previously been based in Indianapolis, where, in the early Sixties, the jazz scene bristled with brilliant young jazzmen such as trumpeter Freddie Hubbard, guitarist Wes Montgomery, and composer David Baker.

Hardiman has now retired from City College; but the nineteen-piece band, which he formed in 1975, is still going strong. YBGF will host the celebration of its 43rd anniversary. The program has been planned as a “triple-threat” tribute concert, honoring Duke Ellington, Billie Holiday, and Ella Fitzgerald. The band will be joined by two vocalists in recognition of the last two of those honorees, Denise Perrier and Nina Causey.

This performance will take place on the YBGF “main stage” in the Yerba Buena Gardens Esplanade, which is near the northwest corner of Howard Street and Third Street. It will begin at 1 p.m. on Saturday, August 4, and should last for about two hours. Seats are usually set up in front of the stage; but, if August 4 happens to be one of those rare days when the sun comes out, attendees should be prepared to have their own ways to shade themselves. There are also a few shady spots under trees near the stage, and some may even have chairs set up there. There is no charge for this (or any other) YBGF event; so showing up is all that is required. Donations will be collected throughout and after the performance.

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