2017 Mesa Music Festival Taps Randy Jackson as Keynote Speaker

Randy Jackson is coming to Mesa.
Randy Jackson is coming to Mesa. Michael Becker/Fox
The Mesa Music Festival returns on November 10 and 11. The two-day event is more than just a performance showcase. Over 200 bands from around the world are slated to perform at downtown Mesa businesses and on outdoor stages. But the festival is also meant to be an emerging artist symposium, a place for musicians to network with and learn from industry professionals. And no symposium would be complete without a keynote speaker.

This year's keynote speaker is American Idol judge Randy Jackson. While most people know Jackson as the guy who called everyone dawg on American Idol, he's got an impressive music insider's resume.

In addition to producing records, Jackson has a long list of credits as a bass guitarist and session player. He's played with Journey, Bob Dylan, Aretha Franklin, The Divinyls, Kenny G, and Tracy Chapman, to name a few. As a producer, he's worked with Madonna, Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, Celine Dion, and N'Sync.

Music fans and musicians looking to understand the A&R game should mark down November 10 on their calendars. That's when Jackson, who's worked in A&R at MCA and Columbia Records, will take the stage to speak. His speech is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. at Mesa Arts Center.

Ticket information for the two-day event is available on the Mesa Music Festival site.

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Ashley Naftule