Every year, Jazz at Lincoln Center hosts the equivalent of “Woodstock” for high school jazz bands.

It’s called Essentially Ellington and in a word it’s GREAT.

The bad news is you can’t get tickets. It’s for the bands only.

The good news is Jazz at Lincoln Center video streams the entire three day program live and later post videos to YouTube.

For the first year ever, a band from Cuba participated. Directed by Camilo Moreira.

The band wasn’t one of the three finalists, but some of its members were recognized for individual excellence.

They were:

– Baritone Saxophone: JORGE SERGIO RAMIREZ


– Tenor Saxophone: LUIS MIGUEL SANCHEZ

The band’s trumpet section was also recognized

We don’t have any video of them playing (yet), but to get an idea of the quality of the playing at this event, check out Newark Academy playing “Jack the Bear.”

Newark Academy Jazz Band at Essentially Ellington 2017

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

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Cuban master Bebo Valdés and friends
Cándido Camero and Bobby Sananbria

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