all that jazz

Jazzy new outdoor music series celebrates Houston stars and favorite parks

New outdoor music series celebrates Houston stars and favorite parks

Jazzy Sundays in the Park Houston music jazz saxophone
Enjoy cool weather and chill tunes at these free concerts. Photo by Katya Horner

These toasty summer days — where minutes outside can feel like an eternity — may have some locals yearning for cooler temps in the great outdoors. With that in mind, a new entertainment series marries lush outdoor green spaces and smooth tunes.

Jazzy Sundays in the Parks, a new live music series celebrating jazz (natch) in Houston, is coming to some popular outdoor spots this fall.

The free, family-friendly concerts run each Sunday in September at Emancipation Park, every Sunday in October at Discovery Green, and every Sunday in November at The Water Works in Buffalo Bayou Park.

This jazzy series, postponed due to COVID, comes courtesy of Discovery Green Conservancy, Buffalo Bayou Partnership, Emancipation Park Conservancy, and a grant from the Kinder Foundation.

Music fans can expect names such as The Conrad Johnson Orchestra, which is made up of former students of the late, iconic music educator from Houston’s Kashmere High School — and is the subject of the 2011 documentary, Thundersoul. Familiar performers such as Jewel Brown will join up-and-coming artists such as The Peterson Brothers, according to a press release.

Each concert (4 pm) will kick off with a free workshop at 3 pm, where kids can learn about music and instruments in partnership with Da Camera and Young Audiences of Houston.

A showcase performance, dubbed a Series Spectacular, will be headlined by heralded  American gospel and R&B singer — and civil rights activist — Mavis Staples at Discovery Green on Friday, October 15. Local star made good, Marcos Varela (a Kinder HSPVA graduate), will open the show. Doors are at 6:30 pm; performances begin at 7:30 pm.

For a full list of outdoor concerts, showtimes, and more, visit the official website.