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Music curator Danny Schauffler strikes gold with a lineup that includes Mel Brown, Curtis Salgado and Jeff Lorber

REVIEW PHOTO: SAM STITES - Saxophonist, Valley Catholic High School band director and Festival of the Arts music curator Danny Schauffler poses for a photo outside the Lakewood Center for the Arts, one of the venues where festival-goers will be able to enjoy the expertly crafted lineup Schauffler has put together. COURTESY PHOTO: LAKE OSWEGO FESTIVAL OF THE ARTS - Mel Brown brings indredible drum accumen and a tight sound to the festival's lineup There's no other way to put it: The 55th-annual Lake Oswego Festival of the Arts will be filled with musical heroes.

With heavy hitters like Grammy Award winner and 2007 Oregon Music Hall of Famer Jeff Lorber, 2018 Blues Artist of the Year Curtis Salgado and local percussion legend Mel Brown, there's no shortage of talent to keep festival-goers moving this weekend to the sweet jazz and blues stylings of some of the best artists the Pacific Northwest has to offer.

"The thing that was bouncing around in my head was, 'Go big or go home," says Danny Schauffler, the festival's music curator, educator and widely-regarded saxophonist. "So I went after Jeff Lorber, who was one of my high school heroes for jazz in the Northwest."

The three-day festival is expected to draw 25,000 people to the Lakewood Center for the Arts (368 S. State St.) and George Rogers Park (611 S. State St.)from Friday, June 22, through Sunday, June 24. In addition to the music, exhibits will include an Open Show, featuring work from emerging and established artists; "Artists Vision," which will document the journey that artwork takes on the road to creation; a show featuring the work of local students; and Art in the Park, featuring more than 100 booths filled with jewelry, ceramics, photography, painting and more.

SUBMITTED PHOTO: VINCENT VAN DE WIJINGAARD - Coming off a Grammy Award win for his latest album, 'Prototype,' Jeff Lorber is a hot commodity. The fesitval will also present a unique Special Exhibit — fittingly titled "Layers: The Evolving Art of 3-D Printing" — which will allow the audience to learn and interact with the artistic side of an increasingly popular art-making technology. There will be food, beer and wine, too, as well as a "Kids Get Creative" program featuring everything from comedy shows and storytimes to a mobile DJ, face-painting and wheel-throwing clay.

All of the events and exhibits are free and open to the public, although a suggested donation of $5 per person or $10-$20 per family is encouraged to support opportunities for local artists. For hours and details, visit www.lakewood-center.org.

This year, Schauffler believes he has struck gold by signing Lorber, the jazz-fusion megastar who is credited with kicking off the careers of some of the most well-known names in the game today. Joining Lorber on stage Saturday night will be bassist Jimmy Haslip, formerly of the jazz-fusion quartet Yellowjackets, and drummer Gary Novak.

COURTESY PHOTO: LAKE OSWEGO FESTIVAL OF THE ARTS - Portland blues singer Curtis Salgado is riding a high after being named the 2018 Soul Blues Artist of the Year. "They're really high-end stuff, so I was fortunate to be able to get someone who is outside of my circle and limited range of local 80s musicians," Schauffler says.

Fans of old-school country will get a treat Friday evening with two Northwest-based bands — Wildcat Rose of Seattle and Portland's Jenny Don't and the Spurs — taking the stage to revive the musical stylings of Johnny Cash, Patsy Cline and Hank Williams.

Saturday's lineup will feature not only Lorber and his band but also smaller acts like Los Angeles-based psychedelic Chicano-rockers Trujillo and Salem blues guitarist Ty Curtis. Rounding out the day will be a special performance from Schauffler's own ska-rock project, the Crazy 8s, who are riding a wave of resurgence after celebrating the 30-year anniversary re-release of their first studio album, "Law and Order," on vinyl.

Sunday will host a lineup of jazz, blues, gospel and acoustic/Americana, with names including Julie Amici, Eldon T. Jones with N Touch, Mel Brown B3 Organ Group and Curtis Salgado.

"Curtis Salgado just won the Blues Foundation's 2018 Soul Blues Male Artist of the Year Award, and that's just an amazing accomplishment for him, so we're really excited to have him," Schauffler says.

To fill out the schedule, Schauffler will bring in young musicians of all genres — a deliberate attempt to get a new generation of musicians on stage at the festival and encourage them to follow their dreams. Featured in the lineup: 2018 Oregon Music Hall of Fame scholarship winner and classical violinist John Fawcett of Bend, and local drummer James Ford and the Built Toughs.

"James is now a professional, but he's performed at the festival in the past as one of my students," Schauffler says. "As a teacher over the past 20 years, I've been scared to encourage kids to go into professional music, but I always want them to make it part of their lives indefinitely. James has done that in a really cool way."

Schauffler says he hopes to see some younger faces in the crowd, too.

"We want to invite the younger folks to come and support whatever music style they like," he says. "The more we can get the youth in Clackamas County to get off their phones and practice their (instrument) or go out to hear some music to get excited and get inspired, the better."

Contact Lake Oswego Review reporter Sam Stites at 503-479-2375 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

IF YOU GO

FRIDAY, JUNE 22

At the Lakewood Center:

11:45 a.m.-12:45 p.m.: Student Musicians

4-5 p.m.: John Fawcett, classical violinist and 2018 Oregon Music Hall of Fame Scholarship winner

At George Rogers Park:

4 p.m.: Missoula Children's Theatre: "Blackbeard the Pirate"

6-7:30 p.m.: Wildcat Rose

7:30-9 p.m.: Jenny Don't and the Spurs

SATURDAY, JUNE 23

At the Lakewood Center:

12:45-1:30 p.m.: Student Musicians

1:45-2:15 p.m.: The Loprinzi Trio

4-5 p.m.: Valley Catholic Alumni Jazz Band

At George Rogers Park:

10 a.m.: Missoula Children's Theatre: "Blackbeard the Pirate"

1-2 p.m.: Trujillo

2:30-3:30 p.m.: Ty Curtis

4-5:30 p.m.: James Ford and the Built Toughs

6-7 p.m.: Jeff Lorber Fusion

7:30-9 p.m.: Crazy 8s

SUNDAY, JUNE 24

At the Lakewood Center:

12:45-1:30 p.m.: Valley Catholic Flute Choir

1:45-2:15 p.m.: Bosso a Duex

At George Rogers Park:

11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.: Julie Amici

1-2 p.m.: Eldon T. Jones & N Touch

2:30-3:30 p.m.: Mel Brown B3 Organ Group

4-5 p.m.: Curtis Salgado

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