INDIANAPOLIS — To say that Rob Dixon is the "King of Jazz" in Indy might embarrass him. But as many gigs as he plays...not to mention he is featured on a downtown mural of icons of the city... it would not be inaccurate.
The saxophone virtuoso admits 2022 has been a busy year for himself and other Hoosier musicians, a full schedule that includes this weekend's Indy Jazz Fest at Garfield Park's MacAllister Amphitheater. "It's a thriving scene in the Midwest in general," Dixon told me during a visit to our studio. "Coming back from pandemic, I tell people it seems like we're trying to make up for 2020 and 2021 in 2022. It's like three years' worth of gigs all in one year."
The annual celebration of jazz put on by Dixon and a host of others is just as packed. The lineup includes Robert Glasper, the pianist who has won four Grammy awards with his fusion of jazz with soul and hip-hop. R&B star Lalah Hathaway, daughter of the late soul legend Donnie Hathaway, is also at Jazz Fest this year, along with Tank & The Bangas and Ghost-Note.
Rob Dixon will perform with the local all-star unit From The 317, and as happens every year, Jazz Fest will feature some of the best young musicians in the state with the Indiana All-State High School Jazz Combo. They will be accompanied by veteran trumpeter Derrick Gardner.
Indy Jazz Fest is this Saturday and Sunday, October 1 and 2, at MacAllister Amphitheater at Garfield Park. Click here to find out how you can get tickets, and watch my entire chat with Rob Dixon in the link above.