A rooftop event at the Westgate Hotel
A rooftop event at the Westgate Hotel. Courtesy of the hotel

The iconic Westgate Hotel in downtown San Diego is offering a rooftop jazz program almost every Thursday night throughout the summer.

The 6th Annual Sunset Poolside Jazz Series features a lineup of smooth-jazz artists from throughout Southern California curated by local trumpet virtuoso Gilbert Castellanos.

The performances take place from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. every Thursday but July 18, which is during the chaotic week of Comic-Con. No reservations are required, and tables are available on a first-come, first-serve basis.

“We’re proud to bring together top jazz artists for some fun, sun and soul at our Summer Poolside Jazz Series,” said Tina Hingle, the hotel’s marketing manager. “Our rooftop is the perfect place to showcase the stars of Southern California jazz and offer guests a unique urban experience where they can listen to a hot lineup and cool off in the summer.”

Here’s the current schedule for the summer series:

  • June 20 — Dennis Gittens, an accomplished local vocalist with a sweet, soulful jazz style
  • June 27 — Coral Macfarland Thuet, whose repertoire combines jazz and the music of Latin America
  • July 4 — The Ian Buss Trio, led by an accomplished saxophonist, promises a night of dazzling jazz and showmanship
  • July 11 — The Matt Hall Quartet, known for its rich sounds and cool vibes
  • July 25 — The Steph Johnson Band, with the soul-jazz vocalist, guitarist and composer sharing her unique voice
  • Aug. 1 — The Robert Dove Trio weaves together a variety of musical configurations to create a blissful, soothing evening
  • Aug. 8 — The Holly Hofmann Trio features the flute as a front-line instrument for both both classical music and jazz
  • Aug. 15 — The Lorraine Castellanos Trio features the jazz chantress and classical guitarist both as an instrumentalist and vocalist
  • Aug. 22 — Irving Flores, a giant of Latin piano who has appeared with numerous jazz greats
  • Aug. 29 — The Gilbert Castellanos Quartet, led by the master trumpeter and bandleader who curated the series
  • Sept. 5 — Besos De Coco, a duo who blend the austerity and grace of classical music with the improvisation and spontaneity of jazz
  • Sept. 12 – Curtis Taylor, Grammy Award-winning trumpeter, creates a unique blend of soulfulness, harmonic sensibilities and rhythm

A $25 food and beverage minimum per person applies for each event, and parking is available for $10.

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Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.