The Hampton Jazz Festival is a major musical event started in 1968, and features many of the world’s major jazz artists. It is held during the last full weekend in June each year, with the primary venue being Hampton, Virginia’s Hampton Coliseum. Festival organizers describe it as “the best available jazz, R&B and blues artists that are on tour during the time of the festival… packaged at a reasonable price.”
The Hampton Jazz Festival began in 1968 as a way to highlight great jazz. Held in the Hampton Colliseum the last full weekend in June, the annual event has hosted virtually every major jazz artist alive.
In the inaugural year, featured artists included Count Basie, Gary Burton, Dizzy Gillespie, Ramsey Lewis, Herbie Mann Quintet, Thelonious Monk Quartet, Wes Montgomery, Dionne Warwick, and Muddy Waters. 1969, the second year, brought such notables as Booker T & the MGs, George Benson Quartet, Dave Brubeck Trio with Gerry Mulligan, Ray Charles, Miles Davis, Gary Davis, Duke Ellington Orchestra, Sly and the Family Stone, and Herbie Hancock.