This past weekend the 13th annual Hyde Park Jazz Festival brought 36 performances by local, national, and international artists to more than a dozen venues and stages in and around Hyde Park. Saturday’s programming included two new works commissioned from Chicago composers in partnership with the U. of C.’s Logan Center for the Arts: Angel Bat Dawid‘s Requiem for Jazz and Isaiah Collier’s The Story of 400 Years, both of which employed large mixed-discipline ensembles to address the history of jazz, the history of slavery, and the African American experience. Percussionists Hamid Drake and Adam Rudolph, who founded the influential Mandingo Griot Society with Gambian kora player Foday Musa Soso in the late 1970s, performed as the duo Karuna. And pianist Sylvie Courvoisier played in a duo with guitarist and brand-new MacArthur fellow Mary Halvorson.
Photographer and musician Michael Jackson went to both days of the festival, and his images capture these acts and many more. Chicago is fortunate to have not just its downtown jazz fest but also this world-class event on the south side, supported by a complex web of partnerships between private institutions, nonprofits, city agencies, foundations, corporations, and volunteers. Its most important supporters, though, are the tens of thousands of people who come out to see the music, and they’re in Jackson’s photos too. The images are collected in a slideshow below. v
Philip Montoro has been an editorial employee of the Reader since 1996 and its music editor since 2004. Pieces he has edited have appeared in Da Capo’s annual Best Music Writing anthologies in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2010, and 2011. He shared two Lisagor Awards in 2019 for a story on gospel pioneer Lou Della Evans-Reid, and he’s also split two national awards from the Association of Alternative Newsmedia: one for multimedia in 2019 for his work on the TRiiBE collaboration the Block Beat, and one in in 2020 for editing the music writing of Reader staffer Leor Galil. Philip has played scrap metal in Lozenge, drummed with the Disasters, the Afflictions, and Brilliant Pebbles, and sung for the White Outs. He wrote the column Beer and Metal from 2012 till 2015, and hopes to do so again one day. You can also follow him on Twitter.