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Matt Wilson

Rootabaga Jazz Festival


Andrew Crawford

Music Administrator and Managing Director of Jazz Year

2 East South Street

Galesburg, IL 61401-4999


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Envelopes filled with lyrics for the choir.

Matt Wilson celebrates the return to music making! May 3-7, 2022 features Matt Wilson with his all-star band along with the Knox Alumni Big Band, the Galesburg High School Big Band, the Faculty and Friends Combo, and the Knox Jazz Ensemble.

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May 3, 2022

Matt Wilson and Jeff Lederer School Tour group
United High School
Free and open to the public

The Matt Wilson School Tour group will perform a concert as part of the Rootabaga Jazz School Tour. On Tuesday, May 3rd and Wednesday, May 4th, the Matt Wilson group will tour seven area schools performing for elementary, junior high, and high school students.

May 5, 2022

Faculty and Friends Combo
Galesburg Community Arts Center 
Admission: $5, Knox Students free with ID

The Faculty and Friends performance features Knox's accomplished jazz faculty and local jazz musicians from the vibrant live music community of central Illinois.

May 6, 2022

Galesburg High School Big Band
6:00 p.m.- 7:00 p.m.

Knox Alumni Big Band 
7:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m.

Matt Wilson Rootabaga Extravaganza!
9:00 p.m.

Galesburg Community Arts Center
Admission: $10/Knox Students free with ID

May 7, 2022

Rootabaga Kids: Matt Wilson Group
Galesburg Public Library
Free and open to the public

This free family friendly event features the 2018 Jazz Journalists Association Artist of the Year, Matt Wilson. This promises to be a very engaging and entertaining experience for the whole family.

May 7, 2022

Matt Wilson Rootabaga Extravaganza!
Orpheum Theatre, 57 S. Kellogg St., Galesburg
5:00 p.m.
Free floor & balcony seats • $20 reserved mezzanine

Celebrate the return to music making with Matt Wilson! Matt has a assembled a special star-studded cast for this celebration of Rootabaga.

Matt Wilson has released thirteen albums as a leader, appeared on more than 400 others as a sideman and has played with an impressive array of some of the most legendary names in jazz, including Wynton Marsalis, Lee Konitz, Joe Lovano, Pat Metheny, Dewey Redman, Charlie Haden, John Scofield, Joanne Brackeen and Herbie Hancock, just to name a few.

Wilson was named 2018 Musician of the Year by the Jazz Journalists Association and his album, Honey And Salt (Music Inspired by the Poetry of Carl Sandburg), won the JJA’s Album of the Year Award. That recording and his previous, Beginning of a Memory, accomplished the rare feat of an artist receiving consecutive 5-star (masterpiece) reviews from DownBeat magazine.

Wilson’s commitment to jazz goes far beyond his skills as a drummer and bandleader. Also a renowned educator, he is on a tireless mission to foster a lively and deep connection between music and people, whether they are playing or listening to it. To that end, he is extremely passionate about bringing jazz to new audiences and inspiring students to be as individualistic and imaginative as possible.

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Printed on Saturday, January 22, 2022