D.C. Jazz Festival Fills Streets With Music | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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D.C. Jazz Festival Fills Streets With Music

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The 8th annual D.C. Jazz Festival kicks off this weekend, with performances taking place all around the city. The festival is usually held on the National Mall, but this year festival organizers decided to run it like the Fete du Musique in Paris, with bands playing at various locations in the District.

"We're in 21 neighborhoods; 125 performances; over 60 venues over 10 days," says Sunny Sumter, director of the D.C. Jazz Festival. "It's pretty enormous!"

The event provides opportunities for budding musicians like 18-year-old trumpet player Paul Bailey and his band.

"My quintet is basically a group of graduating seniors," he says.

It's also an opportunity for seasoned professionals like Bassist Herman Burney to give back to his community.

"'Cause music is really bigger than just me," says Burney. "So it's our job not only to play, but to proliferate it."

There are free jazz events every night this week.

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