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New at Newport: NPR offers live stream from jazz festival

August 5, 2011 |  3:37 pm


This post has been updated. See note at the bottom.

Barring the sudden ability to fold the country in half, the famed Newport Jazz Festival in Rhode Island has always been out of reach for most West Coast jazz fans. Now, in a move that cries out for a return of a "Carmageddon"-like case of cabin fever, NPR Music will offer free streaming audio of all the happenings through its website or smart phone app beginning at 11 a.m. PST Saturday. (To whet your appetite, the station has already uploaded audio from last year's festival, including Ken Vandermark, Gretchen Parlato and Julian Lage.)

The only question could be choosing when to tether yourself to a computer. Does one opt for Saturday afternoon with New Orleans' Trombone Shorty, rising star Ambrose Akinmusire and boundary-pushing saxophone great Steve Coleman? Or should Sunday be the pick with Ravi Coltrane, the John Hollenbeck Large Ensemble and Joshua Redman's James Farm?

Considering that the above sampling only scratches the surface of the lineup, maybe it's best to try to tune in to both.


Jazz review: Todd Sickafoose's Tiny Resistors at the Hammer

There's something funny about bandleader John Hollenbeck

CD review: James Farm, 'James Farm'

-- Chris Barton

Photo: Troy "Trombone Shorty" Andrews, left, onstage at the Playboy Jazz Festival in 2010. Credit: Ringo H.W. Chiu / For the Los Angeles Times

[Updated Aug. 8, 10:50 a.m.: In an earlier version of this post, Newport was described as being in Connecticut.]