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Jazz Fest Taps Pianist Miller as Resident Artist, Unveils Partial Lineup

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The Detroit International Jazz Festival announced today that pianist Mulgrew Miller will be artist-in-residence for the 2010 edition of the annual downtown Labor Day weekend festival.

Miller, 54, a leading mainstream pianist known for his versatility and his swinging, harmonically acute style, will perform with several groups, including his own sextet Wingspan. He'll also be involved in education and outreach activities in the months leading up the festival.

The Memphis-born Miller succeeds a pair of bassists as the festival's resident artist, John Clayton (2009) and Christian McBride (2008), and violinist Regina Carter (2007).

Officials also announced the theme for 2010, “Flame Keepers," a nod to innovative players, composers and bandleaders who were also known for mentoring young talent. The 2010 festival will offer homages to a constellation of heroes, including drummer Art Blakey, pianist-composer Horace Silver, Detroit-raised singer Betty Carter, bassist Ray Brown and composer-arranger Gil Evans.

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