Upcoming Shows

We are excited to announce the upcoming shows for our fourth season at BLU Jazz+! Additional dates & performers will continue to be added, so check back often to catch your favorite artists at Northeast Ohio’s premier destination for live jazz, fine food & spirits!
 
Tickets are general admission (unless otherwise noted) on a first-come, first served basis, and you are only guaranteed admission for the showtime listed on your ticket. Please buy your tickets online in advance to guarantee admission.
 
See you at the show!
 



Dec
8

Cleveland Jazz Orchestra: “Peanuts Meet the Grinch!” ft. Russ Mitchell & Evelyn Wright WKYC’s Russ Mitchell narrates “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch” and Louis Armstrong’s last recording, “T’was the Night Before Christmas”, along with swinging versions of the perennial favorite “A Charlie Brown Christmas” in our special concert series with the Cleveland Jazz Orchestra!

Friday, December 8



International recording star & NE Ohio native, Vanessa Rubin, pays centennial tribute to a remarkable quartet born in 1917: Northeast Ohio’s own Tadd Dameron, Dizzy Gillespie, Thelonious Monk & Ella Fitzgerald in our special concert series with the Cleveland Jazz Orchestra!

 

For 32 years, The Cleveland Jazz Orchestra has been Northeast Ohio’s premier jazz voice. Led by trombonist, composer & arranger, Paul Ferguson, the CJO promotes jazz in its historical and contemporary forms, through concerts with gifted jazz musicians, arrangers, composers and educators in northeast Ohio. The CJO aims for worldwide recognition in cooperation with guest artists, and looks to shepherd young musicians toward the future of jazz. This season exemplifies this mission and vision through a variety of new music, new compositions and arrangements, and a stellar line-up of well-known guest artists and young up-and-coming talent.

 

Join us as the Cleveland Jazz Orchestra makes their return appearance to BLU Jazz+ with very special guest, Vanessa Rubin – get your tickets now!

[read more]

8:00 pm

$25 (advance), $30 (door)

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Dec
9

Forecast After a sold-out summer BLU debut, contemporary jazz sensation from Cleveland brings funk, rock, reggae & pop back to the BLU stage! Featuring Lem Adams, Alphonso McDuffie, Gary Stevenson, Gene Butler.

Saturday, December 9



The native Cleveland contemporary jazz band performs a musical blend of instrumental jazz, funk, rock, reggae and pop. The band is composed of vibist Lem Adams, saxophonist Riley Richard, keyboardist Alphonso McDuffie, bassist Gary Stevenson, drummer Gene Butler.

 

In addition to their regular performance dates the band has opened for Earl Klugh, The Crusaders, Stanley Turrentine, Bob Newhart, Roy Ayers, Jeff Lorber, Angie Bofill, Michael Paulow, Pieces of a Dream, Brian Auger, Bob James, and David Garfield just to mention a few. Awards include the 1985 and 1986 Michelob Jazz Search, Best Jazz Fusion Band from the 1993 Midwest urban Music Awards and Best Contemporary Jazz Band from Scene Magazine in 1999. Forecast performed as the official house band of the Cleveland Cavaliers at Gund Arena for the 2001-2002 season.

 

Join us at BLU for the return of this hard-hitting group, get your tickets now!

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8:00 pm

$15

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Dec
10

Nick Paparone Sextet Up-and-coming jazz guitarist fronts heavy-hitting band of jazz all-stars in return to BLU! Featuring Nick Paparone, Fred Davis, Jack Schantz, Rock Wehrmann, Jordan McBride, Mark Gonder.

Sunday, December 10



Nick Paparone is a jazz guitarist based in Northeast Ohio. Studying under greats such as Bob Fraser, Jack Schantz, Dan Wilson and James Cirillo; he is appearing more and more often within the Akron-Cleveland jazz scene.

 

With roots in jazz, Latin, rock and blues, he brings his own style and sound to the bandstand. Appearing in his BLU Jazz+ debut, Nick features his grandfather, Fred Davis, a professional saxophone player in Northeast Ohio for over 60 years, along with some of his oldest friends.

 

Catch this rising star guitarist in his return appearance as a leader on the BLU bandstand – get your tickets today!

[read more]

6:00 pm

$12

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Dec
13

Jackie Warren Northeast Ohio jazz & salsa pianist sensation brings her high-energy artistry to BLU for a very special midweek show! Featured guests often join the area's "First Lady of Jazz" for a tune or two - don't miss it!

Wednesday, December 13



Jackie Warren, a cornerstone of the Cleveland jazz & salsa scenes, is one of the most in-demand pianists in the area and has rightfully earned the nickname “Cleveland’s First Lady of Jazz.” As an educator, she has taught at Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C), and maintains a private studio. Ms. Warren has shared the stage with giants in both the jazz & salsa idioms, including David Fathead Newman, Benny Bailey, Clark Terry, Frank Morgan, Bobby Watson, Frank Foster, Jane Bunnett and the Spirits of Havana, Los Munequitos de Matanzas, Othello Molineaux, Donald Harrison, Gerald Wilson, & Jimmy Heath to name a few.

 

 

Enjoy dinner, cocktails and some midweek swingin’ jazz every Wednesday!

[read more]

8:00 pm

Free

Buy Tickets


Dec
14

BLU Jazz Jam w/ Theron Brown Bring your horn and come be part of Akron's jazz history in the making! Hosted by fan-favorite pianist, Theron Brown, and his trio - presented by the BLU Jazz+ Masterclass Foundation (BJMF).

Thursday, December 14



Akron-based jazz pianist, Theron Brown, is a frequent performer and jam session bandleader at BLU Jazz+. Influenced at a young age by Thelonious Monk, Oscar Peterson, Herbie Hancock, & Art Tatum, Brown has played with musicians such as Dan Wilson, Sean Jones, The Huntertones (formerly DW6), The Cleveland Jazz Orchestra, The Glenn Miller Orchestra, The Bad Plus Band, Chris Coles, The Sam Blakeslee Large Ensemble, Javon Jackson, Snarky Puppy, Donny McCaslin, Peter White, Walter Beasley, Christian McBride, Ken Peplowski, Gary Smulyan, The Admirables, University of Akron Ensembles, Nathan Davis, and Bobby Selvaggio.

 

Theron has played at venues and events such as: The Lincoln Theater (Columbus, Ohio), Small’s Jazz Club (New York, New York), The Montreal Jazz Festival (Montreal, Canada), The Tri-C Jazz Festival (Cleveland, Ohio), The Toronto Jazz Festival (Toronto, Canada), The Blue Plum Jazz Festival (Johnson City, Tennessee), BLU Jazz+ (Akron, Ohio), Salle Wilfrid Pelletier, Palace de Arts (Montreal, Canada), Sapporo Concert Hall (Sapporo, Japan), Olympus Hall Hachiouji, Tokyo Kokusai Forum Hall C, (Tokyo, Japan), Sun Plaza Hall (Sendai, Japan), Ishikawa Kenritsu Ongakudo (Kanazawa, Japan), and Izumi No Mori Hall (Urayasu, Japan).

 

In 2014, Theron came across an amazing opportunity, when he was encouraged by family and friends; he auditioned for and was cast as young Herbie Hancock in the soon to be released film, Miles Ahead, directed by and starring Don Cheadle. The film is an intimate look into the life of jazz artist, Miles Davis, and was released in April 2016.

 

The BLU Jazz Jam is for musicians and music lovers alike! Come hang, have a drink (if you’re of age), and experience this exciting forum for musical expression. Bring your “axe” and play through tunes, pick up licks, trade 4’s, and enjoy the camaraderie of having a gathering place for the area’s finest professional jazz musicians (as well as the up-and-comers)!

[read more]

8:00 pm

Free (donations accepted for BJMF)

Buy Tickets


Dec
15

Salsa Party w/ Sammy DeLeon Latin Jazz Septet Dance the night away as legendary Cleveland percussionist brings 7-piece band back to BLU for an explosive night of Latin jazz, salsa, merengue & more! Featuring Sammy DeLeon, Jackie Warren, Nelson Orta, Cheito Hernandez, Scott McKee, Tom First, Mark Mauldin.

Friday, December 15



Sammy DeLeon is a well-recognized fixture in the Ohio Latin jazz scene whom has gained popularity for his danceable groove-oriented music in the styles of Latin jazz, salsa, and merengue!

 

DeLeon’s performance credits include performances with El Gran Combo, Tito Rojas, and Tony Vega. DeLeon has performed in New York, Chicago, Miami, and San Juan, Puerto Rico, as well as locally, and has opened for Tito Puente, whose praise he earned. He also fronts his own orchestra which features four vocalists, a trumpeter, saxophonist, pianist, bassist, and three percussion players.

 

The Sammy DeLeon Latin Jazz Septet features Sammy DeLeon (timbales & vocals), Jackie Warren (piano), Nelson Orta (percussion), Cheito Hernandez (bass), Scott McKee (trumpet), Tom First (saxophone), Mark Mauldin (trombone).  Join us in their highly-anticipated return to BLU – get your tickets now!

[read more]

8:00 pm

$15

Buy Tickets


Dec
16

Tony Monaco Internationally-acclaimed Hammond B-3 organist returns to the Rubber City for a night of burnin', hard-swingin' organ trio jazz! Featuring Tony McClung, Derek DiCenzo.

Saturday, December 16



Columbus, OH-based jazz organist, Tony Monaco, released his debut album, “Burnin Grooves,” in 2001 (produced by fellow jazz organist sensation, Joey DeFrancesco) and has gone on to release eight additional recordings since then which have met international acclaim.

 

He has toured and recorded with modern jazz guitar sensation, Pat Martino, and has also performed with the likes of jazz luminaries Mel Lewis, Lewis Nash, Red Holloway, Plas Johnson, Sonny Fortune, Jon Faddis, Adam Nussbaum, Bruce Forman, Harvey Mason, Chester Thompson (drummer), Herlin Riley, Matt Wilson, Jeff Clayton, Terrell Stafford, Eric Alexander, Late Bobby Durham, Russell Malone, Peter Bernstein, Paul Bollenback, Bruce Forman, Kevin Mahogany, & Victor Lewis.

 

In addition to his performance accomplishments, Monaco has produced a series of instructional DVD’s on playing the jazz organ and continues to maintain a very busy schedule that includes festival appearances, clinics, and workshops.

 

 

Join us for a swingin’ affair as we welcome this powerhouse group for a burnin’ evening of organ trio jazz – one night only, get your tickets today!

[read more]

8:00 pm

$15 (advance), $20 (door)

Buy Tickets


Dec
17

Marcus Johnson’s “Holiday Jam” Billboard-ranked musician and NAACP Image Award-nominated keyboardist, pianist, & recording artist returns to Akron by way of Washington, D.C. for a special smooth jazz holiday show! Featuring Rob Hubbard, Johnathan Jones, Tony Watson.

Sunday, December 17



An independent Billboard-ranked musician and NAACP Image Award-nominated jazz keyboardist and pianist, Marcus Johnson is also the CEO and Founder of FLO Brands, LLC and more recently FLO Wine, LLC. He has combined an eminently successful musical career with his love of wine by marrying the two in a unique endeavor.

 

Over the last decade, Marcus Johnson has released 15 successful studio albums. On Pandora, Marcus receives 5.1 million spins per year with 2,000 new stations added each month, and his music receives a 74% “thumbs ups” rating verses an average of 56%. Johnson is the owner of a music label, Three Keys Music, and has emerged as one of the young lions of the “DIY” music world. His unique self-taught style of piano play has earned him distinction among his peers, praise from the media and accolades across the music industry. Marcus is on the cutting edge of ‘Euro Jazz’ having formed JURIS, a musical collaboration with acclaimed Parisian DJ and producer Young Pulse. The duo quickly developed a name within the international music community, enjoying large-scale performances and preparing a Q3 release of their latest project entitled “Eiffel Tower.”

 

Johnson’s success caught the attention of Black Entertainment Television (BET) founder and businessman Robert L. Johnson who invested in Marcus and his newfound company, Marimelj Entertainment Group (MEG). Under their partnership, MEG’s label, Three Keys Music based in the Washington, DC metro area, established its own full service recording studio, Studio 8121; and two music publishing companies, Marimelj Music Publishing and Three Keys Music Publishing. Marcus was responsible for releasing and producing CDs on the Three Keys label for national jazz artists Michael Lington, Jaared Arosemena, Bobby Lyle, Nick Colionne, R&B singer, Alyson Williams and neo-soul songstress Yahzarah and smooth jazz Saxophonists Phillip Martin and Brian Lenair. While producing music for the aforementioned artists, Marcus also released several critically acclaimed albums: Inter Alia, Chocolate City Groovin’; Coming Back Around; Urban Groove, In Person: Live at Blues Alley, Just Doing What I Do, Smooth Jazz Christmas and In Concert for a Cause, all charting at Top 20 or more on Billboard’s Contemporary Jazz Charts.

 

Marcus has released 15 Billboard-charted CDs. He has the distinction of having his groundbreaking 2008 Billboard Top 20 Contemporary Jazz FLO (For the Love Of) CDs which consisted of three distinct albums:¬ FLO Chill, FLO Romance and FLO Standards, all charting Top 10 on Billboard Contemporary Jazz Charts simultaneously. Johnson’s previous solo 2007 release, The Phoenix, was widely lauded by jazz critics and aficionados alike and like Johnson’s previous CDs, it peaked in the Top 20 of Billboard’s Contemporary Jazz charts.

 

Johnson’s next Top 20 Contemporary jazz releases, the unique and multi-faceted Poetically Justified (2009) and This Is How I Rock (2011) solidified Marcus Johnson as heir apparent to the George Duke and Herbie Hancock style of funky urban groove music. Creatively, Johnson continues to evolve as an artist. With the release of his 2012 FLO: Holiday CD and the ongoing collaboration with famed Parisian Producer DJ Pulse – as the musical duo “JURIS” – he has managed to maintain his traditional jazz roots, while also remaining on the forefront of the expanding “Euro Jazz” movement. His music continues to enforce and define his musical legacy as a “jazz movement for all people”.

 

Join us at BLU Jazz+ as we welcome this sensational contemporary jazz artist back to BLU for one night only – get your tickets today!

[read more]

6:00 pm

$25 (advance), $30 (door)

Buy Tickets


Dec
20

Jackie Warren Northeast Ohio jazz & salsa pianist sensation brings her high-energy artistry to BLU for a very special midweek show! Featured guests often join the area's "First Lady of Jazz" for a tune or two - don't miss it!

Wednesday, December 20



Jackie Warren, a cornerstone of the Cleveland jazz & salsa scenes, is one of the most in-demand pianists in the area and has rightfully earned the nickname “Cleveland’s First Lady of Jazz.” As an educator, she has taught at Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C), and maintains a private studio. Ms. Warren has shared the stage with giants in both the jazz & salsa idioms, including David Fathead Newman, Benny Bailey, Clark Terry, Frank Morgan, Bobby Watson, Frank Foster, Jane Bunnett and the Spirits of Havana, Los Munequitos de Matanzas, Othello Molineaux, Donald Harrison, Gerald Wilson, & Jimmy Heath to name a few.

 

 

Enjoy dinner, cocktails and some midweek swingin’ jazz every Wednesday!

[read more]

8:00 pm

Free

Buy Tickets


Dec
21

“Salsa & Bachata Thursdays” Latin Dance Party Join us for our new "3rd Thursdays" Latin Dance Party series at BLU as host DJ Yama spins some red-hot dance music to make you move! Each "Salsa & Bachata Thursday" kicks off with a free dance lesson at 8PM - come party with us!

Thursday, December 21



BLU Jazz+ and Gala Events invite you to enjoy our new “Salsa & Bachata Thursdays” Latin Dance Party at BLU Jazz+ on the 3rd Thursday of each month featuring a fun, energy-packed atmosphere and the best Latin dance music in the area!

 

DJ Yama will be spinning the very best & latest Salsa, Merengue, Bachata, Cha-Cha & more!  We will kick off the evening with a free dance lesson at 8:00PM, so this makes the perfect event for beginner dancers, too!  Mix & mingle over great music, great company, drink specials and amazing food, get your tickets now!

[read more]

9:00 pm

$5 (FREE for students w/ ID at door)

Buy Tickets

Contact

 
 
BLU Jazz+ was named one of the "Best Jazz Venues in the World" by DownBeat Magazine (2016, 2017)*
   
 
Committed to the preservation of America's treasured art form of jazz, BLU Jazz+ Masterclass Foundation (BJMF) is a new program developed by the founders of BLU Jazz+ Akron that brings “front-row” jazz education performance & mentorship opportunities to student musicians and art lovers alike through an ongoing series of special events throughout the year.
   
 

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