By Janee Law
Going on its second year, the Coltrane Day Music Festival is primed to pack Heckscher Park with a slew of talented musicians this Saturday.
Hosted by The Friends of the Coltrane Home, the festival promises to celebrate the music and legacies of John and Alice Coltrane, along with raising money to continue preservation of the Coltrane home in Dix Hills.
“It should be an amazing event for people,” said Ron Stein, president of the board of directors of the Friends of the Coltrane Home. “We’re asking that people come together through the common language of music.”
This year’s headliner is renowned drummer Roy Haynes, who, at 91 years old, still doesn’t miss a beat.
“You should expect to hear some of the best jazz in the world, and he’ll probably talk and joke with the audience and get them to sing along at some point,” said Craig Haynes, son of Roy Haynes, who is also a drummer and percussionist slated to perform at the festival. “He doesn’t do much, but when he gets on the drums, he’s like half his age or less, so it’s always a joy to watch him and hear him play.”
Representing the Coltrane family is John Coltrane’s daughter, Michelle Coltrane, who is also slated to put on a musical performance.
This year, the event will be delivering a strong emphasis on women performers. Along with Michelle Coltrane, Melissa Aldana and the Firey String Sistas are also set to perform.
But first, the Voices of Huntington Gospel Choir is expected to kick off the event, and will be followed by performances from Ray Anderson, Steve Salerno, The Electrix, Randy Brecker, Willie Steel and more.
“All these musicians are coming to play in front of people and to give to the cause, which is what this event is for to support the restoration of the historic home of John and Alice Coltrane,” Stein said.
Covering all types of music, like jazz, funk, blues, electronic music and hip-hop, the festival will also consist of more than 15 workshops and community jams.
“It’s a tremendous community-oriented event and so the focus is building community through music, which couldn’t be more appropriate at this time,” Stein said. “The one thing that brings us together better than anything else in the world is music.”
Heckscher Park is located at 164 Main St. in Huntington village. The festival is set to run 12 noon-10:30 p.m. There will be food and refreshments served. Children under 18 years old will be admitted for free. There’s a $10 suggested donation for adults.
“Be ready to hear some great music and have a great time,” Haynes said. “The world really needs it right now.”