Atlanta Celebrates Jazz Festival’s 40th Anniversary

Sounds of saxophones, trumpets and trombones will fill Piedmont Park for Atlanta’s Jazz Festival during Memorial Day Weekend. The annual, free event brings Atlanta residents together to celebrate the history of jazz music and culture. Before you start grooving and shaking, don’t miss out on the free performances happening around Atlanta for 40 days leading up to the festival – all in celebration of its 40th anniversary.

40 Days of Jazz

Typically, Atlanta residents can watch jazz legends and up-and-coming musicians perform throughout the entire month of May. But this year, shows started in April for Atlanta residents to enjoy jazz music and culture for a full 40 days – building up to the festival over Memorial Day Weekend.

Free Events

Before the three-day festival officially kicks off on Memorial Day Weekend, Atlanta residents can enjoy a Late Night Jazz show in memory of Miles Davis or check out the Neighborhood Jazz Series. It celebrates the upcoming festival with musicians performing in neighborhood parks every weekend. The event is free and open to all ages.

Festival History

Since its start in 1978, the festival has brought big names in jazz to Atlanta including Ray Charles, Herbie Hancock and Nina Simone. The festival’s founder and former mayor of Atlanta, Maynard Jackson, said he created the event so all Atlanta residents can enjoy a cultural experience for free.

Dates and Times

The Atlanta Jazz Festival is free and open to the public at Piedmont Park. It starts May 26th and runs through the 28th. Until then, check out Jazz bands and musicians at local restaurants, museums, galleries and parks. For a full calendar of upcoming performances and acts, click here. 40 Days of Jazz – April 21 thru May 31 Atlanta Jazz Festival - May 26 thru 28

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