By Cherri Gregg

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The first annual Philadelphia United Jazz Festival kicks off today. The nine day event has ties to the West Oak Lane Jazz & Arts Fest cancelled last year.

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Bassist Warren Oree co-produced the West Oak Lane Jazz and Arts Festival with partner Graziella Dinuzzo for eight years. But when the festival was cancelled in 2012, he began looking for a way to rebuild the Philadelphia jazz scene.

Listen to Cherri Gregg’s interview with Warren Oree in this CBS Philly podcast:

“It is ridiculous that we don’t have a serious, big jazz festival here,” says Oree, so many of the jazz greats like Coltrane came out of Philly.”

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So Oree’s Lifeline Music Coalition secured sponsors like PECO and CitiBank and created the Philadelphia United Jazz Festival and Celebration, which includes a fashion show, musical performances and workshops beginning September 13. It culminates with a party at the Philadelphia Museum of Art and then a weekend of nearly two dozen performances at the Philadelphia Clef Club.

“We’ve got the Clef Club band, we have Julian Cesly, a great alto sax player. We’ve got Abdur Rashid on piano and we’ve got the Sun Ra Arksetra, who are beyond global,” says Oree. “They are inter-planetary”

He says the majority of the artists are from Philadelphia.

“Why should we fly in all these guys from everywhere else when we have so much talent right here?”

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Weekday events are free, with tickets for next Saturday and Sunday running $25 a day. For a full line up of the festival or to buy tickets, go to