New Haven’s Concerts On The Green Preview

July 5, 2012 6:00 AM

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In summer months in the heart of downtown New Haven, the sound of music escapes from a 16 acre plot surrounded by trees and 19th century stone churches. The New Haven Green is alive and rocking, and the best part is, you can enjoy it all for free. Here are some great musical performances not to miss on the Green before fall hits the city.

Mayer Hawthorne

Date: July 21, 2012 Seth Adam at 6 p.m.; Mayer Hawthorne at 7:30 p.m.
Price: Free admission

Michigan native Mayer Hawthorne will transport the Green back to the days of Motown, with his “retro soul” style and sound. He has been labeled a “new schoolsoul sensation” and his innovative compositions draw from childhood influenceslike Smokey Robinson and Holland Dozier. He also draws influence from his peers atthe Stones Throw record label, specifically the deceased hip-hop innovator, J Dilla. Hawthorne has even performed a duet with the world famous Snoop Dogg. The Green willsurely be groovin’ when Mayer Hawethorne hits the stage at 7:30 p.m. Don’t be late––opening for Hawthorne is Seth Adam,


Date: July 28, 2012 at 6 p.m. (Shontelle on at 7:30 p.m.)
Price: Free admission

Recently, the West Indies have burst onto the mainstream R&B scene with artists like Rhianna leading the way for the ladies. The latest singing sensation from Barbados to make waves in the United States and Europe will be belting out her hitsingle “Impossible” from the stage at New Haven Green on July 28. Shontelle, a 23-year-old singer-songwriter who went to “Cadet Camp” with Rhianna as a child in Barbados and studied entertainment law at the University of the West Indies is tipped to get the crowd rockin’ like only a true, rising star can.

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New Haven Jazz Festival

Date: August 11, 2012 beginning at 6 p.m.
Price: Free admission

The sounds of bebop, boogie woogie and the upright bass layin’ down a funky groove will pour down Church, Chapel, Elm and College Streets when the New Haven Green gets hit by the 2012 New Haven Jazz Festival presented by Jazz Haven. Three great acts will hit the stage on August 11, 2012.

Godwin Lewis

First up on the bill is saxophonist Godwin Lewis. A Harlem native who grew upin Connecticut and Port Au Prince, Haiti, Lewis studied at the Thelonious Monk Institute for Jazz Performance, giving him an interesting connection with this year’s headliner.

Annette A. Aguilar and the StringBeans

Next up at 7 p.m. is the Annette A. Aguilar and the StringBeans. Aguilar is a born percussionist with an education in classical music as well as Afro-Cuban studies. Her Latin Jazz rhythms make it impossible to keep your feet still while listening.

T.S. Monk Sextet

The concert will be capped off beginning at 8 p.m. with a performance by the T.S. Monk Sextet startingat 8 p.m. T.S. is the talented son of legendary Jazz pianist, Thelonious Monk. The pioneering pianist’s son was drawn to the drums during his childhood. He picked uphis sticks and toured with his father until his retirement in 1975. The younger Monk kept at it. In 1992, T.S. formed the T.S. Monk Sextet and has kept the ensemblerolling ever since.

If this just isn’t enough Jazz for you, don’t worry. Jazz Haven has dedicated the entire week to the Jazz Festival. Starting August 8, restaurants and businesses around town will be showcasing live Jazz every night after 8:30 p.m. For a full list of participating restaurants visit

Shawn Hebert is a freelance writer covering all things Connecticut. His work can be found on

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