Brian McKnight headlines this year’s Jazz Fest

Grammy nominated singer/songwriter Brian McKnight is confirmed as the headline act for this year’s annual Cayman jazz fest, the Minister of Tourism Charles Clifford has announced.

The Cayman Jazz Fest will take place over three days from 29 November to 1 December. Performing alongside Brian McKnight will be Diane Reeves, Musiq Soulchild, Mike Philips, Monty Alexander, Alex Bugnon and a few other artists still to be confirmed, said a press release from the Department of Tourism.

‘With headline act Brian McKnight and other internationally acclaimed jazz and R&B artists, jazz fest 2007 is going to be another great event,’ said Mr. Clifford. ‘Based on the positive feedback received from visitors and residents after jazz fest 2006 – one influential journalist describing it as a ‘gem’ of a festival, I am confident that we will see an increase in attendance over previous years.

‘The event also provides a forum for local musicians in this genre to interact with and perform beside internationally renowned artists. This opportunity can only boost the development of local talent and bring greater international awareness and appreciation of them.’

A gifted singer, prolific songwriter and brilliant producer, Brian McKnight is known primarily as a romantic balladeer with a strong musical foundation stemming from gospel and jazz, said the release. In 1989, at age 19, he signed a contract with Mercury Records and recorded an amazing 65 songs. He released his first album, Brian McKnight, in 1992 and went on to record three others. His final album with Mercury Records, Anytime, sold over two million copies and was nominated for a Grammy. McKnight then sold over three million copies with his 1999 album, Back at One.

Throughout his career he has collaborated with a variety of musicians including Mase, Sean “Puffy” Combs, Mary J. Blige, Justin Timberlake, Vanessa Williams, Kirk Franklin, Quincy Jones, Boyz II Men, Christina Aguilera and Mariah Carey.

The Cayman jazz fest is organized by the Department of Tourism in partnerships with BET J. Jazz fans can sign up to receive regular updates on the fourth annual Cayman jazz fest by visiting www.caymanislands.ky/jazzfest

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