Chaka Khan with the George Duke Trio has replaced Etta James as the headline act at George Wein’s Jazz Festival 55 on August 7 at the International Tennis Hall of Fame at the Newport Casino in Newport, RI. James has cancelled her run of August appearances due to illness. James also cancelled some spring concerts earlier this year.
Hosted by radio announcer Ron Della Chiesa, the festival will retain its original opening act by Israeli clarinetist Anat Cohen with guitarist Howard Alden in a salute to Benny Goodman.
Individuals who purchased tickets for the August 7 concert through Jazz Festival 55’s official Web site can reportedly request refunds due to James’ cancellation. Tickets for all three days of the festival are still available through the site, as well.
The concert is the opening night of the three-day jazz festival that continues at Fort Adams State Park in Newport on August 8-9.
Artists scheduled to perform on August 8 include Mos Def & The Watermelon Syndicate, Branford Marsalis Quartet, Joshua Redman Double Trio, and Esperanza Spalding. Tony Bennett, Dave Brubeck Quartet, Roy Haynes Fountain of Youth Band, and Michel Camilo are just some of the acts scheduled on August 9.