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George Lopez (left) will star as emcee of the 2013 Playboy Jazz Festival in June. He is pictured on stage with Hubert Laws and Quincy Jones at the line-up announcement held Feb. 28.
Photo by Ashwin Gore
George Lopez (left) will star as emcee of the 2013 Playboy Jazz Festival in June. He is pictured on stage with Hubert Laws and Quincy Jones at the line-up announcement held Feb. 28.

News, Music, Celebrity, Hollywood

2013 Playboy Jazz Festival Line-Up Announced; George Lopez To Host

Posted Mar. 1, 2013, 3:51 pm

Brenton Garen / Editor-in-Chief

The 2013 Playboy Jazz Festival at the Hollywood Bowl on June 15-16 will feature headliners George Duke with special guest Jeffrey Osborne, Naturally 7 with special guest Herbie Hancock, Sheila E. and Bob James/David Sanborn featuring Steve Gadd and James Genus.

Celebrating its 35th Anniversary, the two-day concert will feature a diverse mix of illustrious jazz greats, next generation leaders and Festival favorites, who will spotlight the entire genre of jazz with an assortment of world premieres, rare collaborations, and highly anticipated artist debuts.

New to this year’s Festival is the multi-talented entertainer George Lopez, who will make his own debut as the new master of ceremonies, taking over for this year from the legendary Bill Cosby, who relinquished the role last summer after more than 30 years.

Returning to the Playboy stage, two-time Grammy-winning pianist and keyboardist George Duke will appear as a special guest with renowned R&B/pop singer Jeffrey Osborne, who is making his Festival debut.

The pair reunited on Osborne’s latest release, A Time for Love, a collection of songs expressing Osborne’s longtime appreciation for jazz standards.

The illustrious Duke (who has served as musical director and producer for numerous prominent artists including Dianne Reeves, Anita Baker, Gladys Knight and more) also produced Osborne’s breakthrough solo album Stay With Me Tonight and his hit singles “We’re Going All the Way” and “You Should Be Mine” among others.

Back by popular demand, Naturally 7, who made their triumphant Festival debut in 2010, is returning to the show for a world premiere performance with the iconic Herbie Hancock as a special guest. One of the most distinctively unique groups in music today, Naturally 7 has pioneered a dynamic a cappella style they call “vocal play,” where each member of the group uses only their voice to recreate awe-inspiring sounds of different musical instruments.

The group’s now famous Paris subway performance of “Feel It (In The Air Tonight)” has garnered over five million hits on YouTube.

Hancock, known for transcending the limitations and genres of music, will complement the group’s inventive style with his own modern compositions that have earned him one Oscar and 14 Grammy Awards. Hancock has been an integral part of every jazz movement since the 1960’s. As a member of the Miles Davis Quintet, he was one of the pioneers of the avant garde sound. His innovative recordings during the 70’s, combining electric jazz with funk rock sounds, continue to influence today’s music.

Turning up the heat, the Emmy and Grammy-nominated singer/percussionist Sheila E. is returning for the second time as the leader of her own group in a rare back-to-back appearance.

Her electrifying performance last year rocked the house, winning her a standing ovation that stopped the show. Sheila has previously performed at the Festival with her legendary father, percussionist Pete Escovedo and their renowned family band, with whom she still tours. A star in her own right, she has served as the musical director for such superstars as Jennifer Lopez, Beyonce and Prince. Known for her mega-hit “The Glamorous Life,” she performed with Prince on Purple Rain and also toured with Ringo Starr and his All-Star band among many others. Last year, she performed at the Oscars alongside Pharrell Williams and Hans Zimmer.

Reuniting since their Grammy Award-winning dual recording Double Vision in the mid-80’s, keyboardist Bob James and saxophonist David Sanborn will share the Playboy stage together for the first time as part of their summer tour. The pair will be joined by legendary drummer Steve Gadd and acclaimed bassist James Genus. Renowned beyond the jazz world, the Grammy-winning James is known for both his distinguished solo career and as a founding member of the popular contemporary jazz supergroup FourPlay.

Single day tickets are available through Ticketmaster at, over the phone by calling 213.365.3500 or 714.740.7878, at any Ticketmaster outlet, or by downloading a ticket order form available at

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Jun. 17, 2013, 3:47:43 pm

Millicent Borges Accardi said...

I think this was one of the best festivals in YEARS. Terrific line up. Great crowd! Only bummed my friend's 20 year old video camera was confiscated when all around us other people were shooting with telephoto lens, iPhones, tablets, etc. Security escorted her to Patron Services. No idea why she was singled out!#unfairBowlcamerarules

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