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“Kenny Sara plays it steady at the Levitt”

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By John Sollenberger

With summer coming to a close, it’s time to bid farewell to some of Pasadena’s hot-weather institutions. That includes music at the Levitt Pavilion, which hosts one of the top free concert series in Southern California. The last weekend of the season starts to wind down Friday night with the big sound of Kenny Sara and the Sounds of New Orleans. Sara has had quite a career as a solo performer. The New Orleans-born drummer started playing with seasoned jazz and blues pros at the ripe old age of 14, and never looked back. A regular performer at Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen at Disneyland, he’s gigged with some of the top names in the business, including Herbie Hancock, Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson, Bo Diddley, Pharaoh Sanders, Wayne Shorter, Della Reese, Henry Butler, “Papa” John Creach, Taj Mahal and many others. He’s also served as associate musical director for the New Orleans-themed Broadway musical “One Mo’ Time.” Sara has also contributed to various soundtracks and has been a featured performer on television programs such as “The Rosie O’Donnell Show.”

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