Esperanza Spalding Nabs Best New Artist Nod from Grammys
Esperanza Spalding Nabs Best New Artist Nod from Grammys

The Chick Corea Freedom Band, George Benson and the Manhattan Transfer are among the headliners for the 2010 Playboy Jazz Festival. Now in its 32nd year, the annual festival will be held June 12-13 at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles. Serving once again as master of ceremonies is comedian/actor/activist Bill Cosby.

The Playboy Jazz Festival performance slate was announced during a Feb. 25 press conference at Hugh Hefner's Playboy Mansion. Ten other acts -- including Sax For Stax (Gerald Albright, Kirk Whalum and Jeff Lorber), vocalist Kurt Elling,"Trombone Shorty" Andrews and Tiempo Libre -- will be making their debuts this year at the Playboy Jazz Festival. Additional acts on the bill making return engagements are Esperanza Spalding, Robert Randolph and the Family Band, Marcus Miller and Cuban dance orchestra Los Van Van, back after a 10-year absence.

"You can't say we do the same old, same old," said Darlene Chan, president of festival producer FestivalWest Inc. "We're both inside and outside the box." "The music may be eclectic but it's never boring," noted Cosby, returning for his 29th stint as emcee. "It's still the best ticket in town."

Added festival executive producer Hugh Hefner, "It's a party with the greatest ambience and sound. Given the downturn in the economy and the music business, this music always brings something to the heart and lifts spirits."

The complete Playboy Jazz Festival 2010 lineup is available at playboyjazzfestival.com.