Jazz musician Wynton Marsalis to play live concert at Monmouth Park
The hot sound of live jazz on an autumn afternoon will be coming to New Jersey as one of the genre’s most acclaimed artists performs in-person for the first time since the pandemic began.
Jazz musician Wynton Marsalis says that the inability to play for a live audience the past six months has been painful.
“Most of us have been playing since we were preteens. We’ve never gone this long without playing in our lives,” he says.
Marsalis will perform on Sunday at an outdoor, socially-distant concert in the Garden at the Blu Grotto at Monmouth Park. The concert is presented by the Basie Center for the Arts. It will also be the first live performance since the death of his father, jazz pianist Ellis Marsalis, who died from COVID-19 complications in April.
“He didn’t have a lot of angst or anger around stuff. He accepted the cycle of life,” Marsalis says. “He said, ‘Hey, this is what it is.’ And with my father, he was very serious. So, I joked with him a lot. So, I don’t even think about him and I start laughing.”
This weekend’s concert will feature new compositions. Marsalis says that they are inspired by current events.
“For years, I’ve been likening jazz to democracy, in that we improvise, we have rights, we wing, we have to nurture the common ground and we play the blues,” he says.
Marsalis says that he can’t wait to play live concerts once again.
More information about the concert can be found on Marsalis’s website.