Almost anything can be improved with music, as evidenced by tuba-accompanied balcony serenades, operatic State of the Union addresses, and yodeled bank statements. Tune your ears to the sweet sounds on stage with today’s Groupon for tickets to the Knoxville Jazz Orchestra. Choose between the following options:
• For $28, you get two tickets to “Hello, Pops! A Tribute to Louis Armstrong” on Tuesday, September 27 at 8 p.m. at the Bijou Theatre (a $58 value).
• For $48, you get a four-concert package, which includes one ticket to each of four shows (a $96.50 value). Click here for a list of the included shows.
A 17-piece big band, harmonized by brass, piano, and drums, rounds out the Knoxville Jazz Orchestra, which has performed dozens of local concerts, toured jazz festivals in Europe, and released four CD recordings since its inception. Guest artists add zest to the orchestra's tasty stew of performances, including the show “Hello, Pops! A Tribute to Louis Armstrong,” which is led by vocalist, multi-instrumentalist, and former Wynton Marsalis bandmate Wycliffe Gordon.
Former Count Basie Orchestra vocalist Carmen Bradford croons classic Christmas tunes in the style of Duke Ellington and Glenn Miller at “A Swingin' Christmas,” and Melba Joyce, a former stagemate of Tony Bennett and Marvin Gaye, serenades valentines with classic big-band material at “Jazz Is for Lovers.” The “Country and Bluegrass Meet the Big Band” showcase blends genres like a capricious librarian thanks to the masterful hands of Rob Ickes—named an 11-time Dobro Artist of the Year by the International Bluegrass Music Association—who has collaborated with artists such as Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson, and Alison Krauss.
Knoxville Jazz Orchestra
The Knoxville Jazz Orchestra's 17-piece big band—a medley of brass, bass, piano, and drums—aims to spread jazz like an infectious case of the cooties. Dozens of local concerts and festivals throughout the US and Europe have benefited from their playing, and four CDs have made it so fans can bring the magic home. To add zest to their stew of performances and bring new voices to the area, the ensemble also hosts regular guest artists, including world-renowned soloists. And the group further instills appreciation with a "Jazz in Schools" initiative and a free, annual "Jazz on the Square" concert that lets audiences take in the music in the open air.