The Russian River Jazz and Blues Festival, it can be argued with little fear of debate, is not exactly the jazziest or bluesiest event on the Northern California calendar.
To be sure, the festival set for September 21-22 is worth your attention. I, personally, need scant excuse to spend a weekend amid Sonoma County’s good times and sprawling vines. Throw in some top-flight performers, that mellow late-summer vibe and a riverside location in Guerneville and, well, sign me up.
It’s just that you shouldn’t expect a hard-core experience from a festival boasting Jeffrey Osborne as its jazz headliner and Boz Scaggs on the blues side. Indeed, given the lineup below, Gregory Porter should headline on Saturday and Robert Cray on Sunday.
11 a.m.: Gregory Porter
12:40 p.m.: Euge Groove
2:30 p.m.: Ledisi
4:30 p.m.: Jeffrey Osborne
10:30 a.m., noon: Times 4
2, 3:50 p.m.: Collaboration Jazz Band featuring Brenda Reed
11 a.m.: California Honeydrops
12:40 p.m.: Los Lobos
2:30 p.m.: Robert Cray
4:30 p.m.: Boz Scaggs
10:30 a.m., noon: Robert Thomas
2, 3:50 p.m.: Shane Dwight
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