Sacramento Traditional Jazz Society logo

The Sacramento Traditional Jazz Society (STJS) is the organization behind the annual Memorial Day Weekend Jazz Festival, which is reinventing itself this year as the “Sacramento Music Festival.” Executive Director of STJS, Vivian Abraham, explains that the event has gone through many name changes over the course of its 39 year run. Beginning as the Dixieland Jubilee, it morphed into the Jazz Jubilee, and then to the Jazz Festival.

Despite these changes, Abraham says, “We still found people telling us they did not attend our Festival ‘because I don't like that kind of music.’” Members of the California Repercussions. Photo by Terri M. VenesioAnd so, last year, the decision was made to change the Festival’s name, reflecting a focus on multiple genres of music.

Abraham says, “I believe our message to Sacramento and beyond is that we are a true Music Festival. This year we are very excited and proud to present an event that will feature bands that will honor our roots, but will be presenting many other forms of popular music such as country, bluegrass, rock n' roll, blues, rhythm & blues, and many other surprises.”

Although the Sacramento Music Festival is their largest annual event, STJS works tirelessly throughout the year to pursue their mission of preserving and promoting traditional jazz music throughout SacramentoSince their founding in 1968, STJS has brought the tradition of jazz to youth through their camps, musical curriculums in schools, and their annualSacramento Music Festival by Anne StokesTraditional Jazz Youth Band Festival.

In addition to their work with youth, STJS offers jazz education opportunities for adults as well (including week-long Sacramento Traditional Jazz Camps for both adults and children over the summer), and organizes jazz-centric events for the Sacramento community. 

Reggy Marks of The Nibblers - Photo by Anne StokesThe Jazz Society’s monthly “Jazz Sunday” program brings featured guest artists to Sacramento, while also providing a place for local bands to play. Occurring on the 2nd Sunday of every month at the Dante Club, the events feature music on three stages. At the upcoming Jazz Sunday for May, enjoy a performance by multi-instrumentalist Clint Baker, plus a carnation for every mom in attendance (since the event is on Mother’s Day).

Be sure to stay in town this Memorial Day weekend and experience the revamped and revitalized Sacramento Music Festival, May 25-May 28, featuring more than 400 sets of live music (learn more). Stay in touch with the STJS the whole year through as they continue their efforts of preserving American jazz music for years to come.

Keep up with the Sacramento Traditional Jazz Society:
Official Site
Sacramento Music Festival Official Site
Sacramento Music Festival on Facebook
Sacramento Music Festival on Twitter


This article is part of a monthly feature by on local arts organizations and businesses making a difference in the Sacramento community.


Written by Assistant Editor, Alison Kranz


Photo credits: Image 1: STJS logo; Image 2: Members of the California Repercussions. Photo by Terri M. Venesio; Image 3: Photo by Anne Stokes; Image 4: Reggy Marks of The Nibblers. Photo by Anne Stokes


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