Erykah Badu and Friends

New festival jazzes up Dallas music scene

New festival jazzes up Dallas music scene

Erykah Badu at Bomb Factory in Deep Ellum
Erykah Badu will headline the inaugural Riverfront Jazz Festival, taking place September 1-3, 2017, at Texas Horse Park. Photo by Enrico Casino

The ever-burgeoning festival scene in Dallas will be joined this year by the inaugural Riverfront Jazz Festival, presented by the Black Academy of Arts and Letters and taking place over Labor Day weekend, September 1-3, 2017.

The festival is set to take place at Texas Horse Park and will feature 35 national and international music artists on three stages. Headlining the event will be Dallas' own Erykah Badu, who will also serve as one of the festival's honorary chairs, alongside R&B/jazz musician Will Downing and jazz musician Najee.

Other notable performers will include Euge Groove, Oleta Adams, Peter White, Keiko Matsui, Jon Secada, Rachelle Ferrell, and former American Idol champion Ruben Studdard. Although it's called a jazz festival, it will feature multiple genres, including traditional and smooth jazz, R&B, pop, soul, blues, and neo‐soul. Two of the stages will be designated for the established musicians, while a third will be dedicated specifically for young up-and-coming artists.

The party won't stop when the festival ends on both Friday, September 1, and Saturday, September 2. That's because the Black Academy of Arts and Letters headquarters at 1309 Canton St. will play host to After Party Music Jam Sessions, where musicians from around the globe will bring their instruments to jam and improvise from 12-3 am both nights.

Tickets for the festival are $50 per day in advance or $60 at the door, with three-day festival passes available for $135. There's also VIP seating for $125 per day. Each After Party Music Jam Session is $20. Tickets are now on sale through the festival website.