The Monterey Jazz Festival is the longest consecutively-running jazz festival in the world for a reason. Our exclusive presentation of MONTEREY JAZZ FESTIVAL ON TOUR 2016 celebrates the festival’s legacy of expanding the boundaries of live jazz presentation. Produced by Danny Melnick for Absolutely Live Entertainment and Tim Jackson, Artistic Director of Monterey Jazz Festival, this year’s lineup reflects Monterey’s “traditional-untraditionalist” attitude and jazz-with-a-purpose exuberance. Under the musical direction of Gerald Clayton, the program will embody the festival’s joyful, fun, and rich performances. A who’s-who of critically-acclaimed and GRAMMY®-recognized top artists have signed on for this tour.

Raul Midón is one of music’s most distinctive and searching voices. A “one-man band who turns a guitar into an orchestra and his voice into a chorus” according to The New York Times, some of Midón’s collaborators include Herbie Hancock, Stevie Wonder, Bill Withers, Richard Bona, and Dianne Reeves. He has released seven critically-acclaimed albums since 1999, including his most recent, 2014’s Don’t Hesitate.

Ravi Coltrane is a critically-acclaimed GRAMMY-nominated saxophonist, bandleader, and composer. At the forefront of the restless few who are carving up new paths in jazz, DownBeat called him “a modernist who has absorbed a wealth of jazz [and] those influences are couched so well, resulting in a unique sound, best described as ‘elusive beauty.’”

Nicholas Payton, the GRAMMY-winning virtuoso trumpeter, has earned praise and accolades before he was even out of high school. Described as “genre-defying” and “brashly original’ by the Chicago Tribune, the New Orleans native has appeared on over 120 recordings, and has performed at major concert halls and festivals worldwide in many settings, from solo concerts to his full orchestral work, 2012’s The Black American Symphony.

Anchoring the tour is a remarkable trio featuring Joe Sanders on bass, Gregory Hutchinson on drums, and MJF on Tour musical director and double GRAMMY-nominee Gerald Clayton on piano. Having met while playing at the GRAMMY Camp during their high school years, the trio has built a solid foundation of friendship and trust that is evident in their innovative and daring creative choices which are both rooted in tradition, yet expressive and fresh. Clayton, fluent in the range of styles that make up today´s jazz lexicon, has quickly established himself as a leading figure in the new generation of jazz artists and has recorded or performed with many artists, including Diana Krall, Ambrose Akinmusire, Charles Lloyd, Terell Stafford, and Terri Lyne Carrington.