EAST ORANGE, NJ - One of the mainstays of summer for the residents of East Orange is the annual Jazz in the Plaza Series. Long before it became popular to host outdoor concert events as drivers for economic improvement, East Orange had already created an event where its town folk could come, eat good food and listen to the incredible sounds of local and international artists. And though the original Jazz in the Plaza format goes back over 20 years ago; it has grown and developed into something special under the current Taylor administration.
The City has teamed with sponsors, East Orange General Hospital, Discover Jersey Arts and the Arts Council of East Orange to transform the front of City Hall into a cozy outdoor venue, complete with food and product venders for one’s shopping pleasure.
However, the primary focus is squarely on the many wonderful jazz artists that grace the stage at East Orange. Last week the City featured Hunter Hayes as the special guest.
Hunter Hayes is a New Jersey R & B Singer and Saxophone player from Montclair New Jersey. He was raised in the church and at 15 years old a minister gave him an old silver saxophone which he taught himself to play by ear.
In 1968 at 18 years old, he and his band 'The HotLine" were signed to De-Lite Records along with Kool & The Gang and GQ . In 1991 Hunter put his writing skills to work and wrote the theme song for a TV show called, Due Process, which has since won 7 Emmy awards and still airs twice a week on NJN.
Hunter has not been afraid to Sing and speak the Truth about Controversial subjects such as Racism, Marriage & Child abuse.