Grammy winners Toni Braxton and Chrisette Michele, as well as chart-topping crooner Aaron Neville, are the first big names signed for the 18th staging of the Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival scheduled for Jan. 30 to Feb. 1, 2014.
The popular festival, which will be held at Trelawny Multi-purpose Stadium on Jamaica’s north coast, is expected to sign other major acts who will be announced in the coming weeks.
Braxton captured six Grammy Awards with hits such as “Un-break My Heart,” “Spanish Guitar,” and “Breathe Again” and captured a prominent spot in the hearts of Jamaicans with her smooth vocals.
Chrisette Michele, whose hits include “Epiphany” and “A Couple of Forevers,” won a Grammy for Best Urban/Alternative Performance in 2009 for her song “Be OK”.
Neville’s mega hit “Don’t Know Much” ignited Jamaica in 1989.
He has had four top-20 hits in the United States, including three that went to No. 1 on Billboard’s adult contemporary chart and one that hit No. 1 on the R&B chart.
He has four platinum-certified albums and, in addition to his solo career, has recorded with his brothers Cyril, Art, and Charles as The Neville Brothers.
Patrons locally and from overseas have already made advanced ticket purchases for the three-day music festival, described as Jamaica’s most diverse.
The Jamaica Jazz and Blues Festival is also renowned as a launching pad for some of the nation’s outstanding talents, including Tessanne Chin, Roots Underground, and Romain Virgo.