Artist Testimonials

What musicians are saying about the SFJAZZ Center.

"Why not? Symphony and chamber orchestras have their own places. So it’s a wonderful idea and I’m very happy about it. "

— Hugh Masekela, trumpet

"This is incredible news, hearing that a city in the U.S. is building a dedicated space like this. It’s just amazing, so I’m very excited. "

— Lee Ritenour, guitar

"Having a space where local artists, visiting artists can share their music with audiences, is much appreciated. So that’s exciting. "

— Esperanza Spalding, bass & vocals

"I think it’s amazing… I think this is wonderful. "

— Kenny Werner, piano

"This is a blessed cause. I think the jazz world has to have its own building, its home. This is a great celebration. "

— Yasmin Levy, vocals

"We certainly need it. It helps, especially for all the young people to get involved in the music. It builds character and integrity. "

— Roy Hargrove, trumpet

"We have a similar thing in New York…so I think it’s a great idea to have the same thing happen out here. I look forward to performing there. "

— Kenny Barron, piano

"The SFJAZZ Center, wow, that’s going to be the most incredible thing for all of us and for the city. It’s really nothing short of a miracle. "

— John Santos, percussion

"I think the concert hall is a beautiful idea for the jazz and the education of the new generations. "

— Chucho Valdés, piano

"It’s unbelievable. It’s an incredible move for jazz education in California. I’m just amazed that something so powerful is happening so quickly. "

— Fareed Haque, guitar

"To have a festival like this be represented in its own home base, a theater… that’s an incredible idea and a wonderful idea. "

— Jimmy Haslip, bass

"I think it’s fantastic that San Francisco has it together enough to get people to support music like this. It’s kind of hard to imagine. "

— John Medeski, keyboards

"The SFJAZZ Center is a great project for jazz in general. We need more of this type of action everywhere in the U.S., so it’s good it’s happening here. "

— Lionel Loueke, guitar

"I think it’s fantastic and San Francisco is the perfect place for it. I applaud you for what you’re doing. "

— Steve Tyrell, vocals

"Wow… I think everybody who participates in this idea should be very proud, because jazz is the most beautiful art form created in this country. "

— Paquito D'Rivera, saxophone

"I’ve been watching SFJAZZ for some years now and it’s a pretty unique organization. It’s great that you’re going to have a home. "

— John Scofield, guitar

"It’s going to be a new step in the jazz world, where we’re going to have a new space that is artist-friendly and public-friendly. "

— Angélique Kidjo, vocals

"I’m very happy to hear about it and I think any community could benefit from the cultural value of a center of this nature. "

— Cedar Walton, piano

"The SFJAZZ Center represents the beginning of a community in the Bay Area. "

— Ambrose Akinmusire, trumpet

"Sounds like a fantastic idea. Way overdue. It’s great. "

— Chris Potter, saxophone

"The world needs nice venues, where people can go hear jazz, respect jazz. We don’t have enough stages. I think it’s very, very important. "

— Anat Cohen, clarinet

"This is an awesome initiative… for jazz, for fado, for world music. It’s really great. "

— Ana Moura, vocals

"For musicians, our job is to create community. A place dedicated to the music… elevates the quality of life. It’s very significant. "

— Wynton Marsalis, trumpet

"It’s really a good idea. It’s good to have an initiative to tell people we are ready, we are still here, and we want to move forward. "

— Youssou N'Dour, vocals