This free, family-friendly show takes place outside, at the Cooling Pond’s amphitheater.
Some seating is available on the brewery’s terrace, but the best views of the stage are down front, on the grass. Bring your lawn chairs or blankets.
Like any jam session, this is unscripted, improvised, and unpredictable. Artists will be rotating in and out. Stay all five hours to see the full lineup of talent.
Admission is free, but you need to register here.
Cooling Pond serves its own freshly-made, flavorful craft beers. A variety of wines, hard ciders, and non-alcoholic drinks are also available.
Throughout the afternoon, enjoy a snack or meal from the bar or food truck. You’re welcome to bring your own food, but please, no outside alcohol.
Robert McBride is a resident of Mineral, Virginia who founded Lake Anna Jazz in 2021 to promote jazz appreciation, education, and performance. For this event, he has assembled an array of talent from all over Virginia, some of whom will meet for the first time at “Cool Jazz at Cooling Pond.” Robert is a founding member of Uptown Vocal Jazz Quartet, having recorded and performed with that group internationally.
Dr. James Bjork (“Byork”) is Associate Professor of Psychiatry, Pharmacology and Toxicology at the Virginia Commonwealth University Institute for Drug and Alcohol Studies and is a Neuroscientist in the Mental Health Service of the Richmond Veterans Administration Medical Center. Dr. Bjork conducts behavioral and neuroimaging research on impulsivity, as a cause and consequence of drug and alcohol addiction and suicidality in Veterans and in other populations. He also studies brain development. In addition to all that, he has performed Smooth and Traditional Jazz, as well as Rhythm & Blues and Contemporary Worship all around the Mid-Atlantic for the past 20 years.
Kevin Gaines is a versatile drummer who leads his own jazz quartet based in Richmond, VA. Kevin is a frequent performer in the Richmond and Tidewater regions, and he has been a great friend to Lake Anna Jazz who brings great music to Lake Anna.
For more information, visit
Besides serving as Vice President of Lake Anna Jazz, Ginny is an accomplished composer, arranger instrumentalist, singer, and bandleader.
Tina Hashemi is a jazz singer who recently graduated from the University of Virginia, where she studied music performance and jazz voice under Stephanie Nakasian and John D’earth. She recently completed an album of originals and standards entitled Blue Champagne.
For more information, visit
Victor Haskins is a multi-instrumentalist, multidisciplinary artist, international performer, composer, improviser, bandleader, and educator.
He has performed in the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts Millennium Stage in Washington, D.C., played concert halls throughout Virginia and Maryland, performed in jazz clubs from New York to New Orleans, and brought his music and message of music education to overseas destinations including South Africa, Central America, and Europe.
Victor directs the In-School Jazz Ensembles for the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, and teaches Jazz Trumpet, Improvisation, and the Jazz Ensemble at the College of William & Mary.
For more information, visit
Michael Hawkins, a Virginia native now residing in Chester, is an accomplished musician and educator. His quartet, “Michael Hawkins and the Brotherhood” performs frequently on the Richmond jazz scene, and he has provided the bass lines behind many jazz greats, including multiple recordings with pianist Cyrus Chestnut and his band. When not performing, he teaches individual lessons, as well as conducting clinics and master classes in upright bass. Apart from his musical pursuits, Michael serves as an advisor for the Reginald F. Lewis College of Business at Virginia State University.
Michael can be found on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/Michaelhawkinsandthebrotherhood/
Tim Holmes grew up in Louisa County with musical parents who taught him piano at home. He began performing at church by 14 and soon became Minister of Music, a position he still holds at Shady Grove Baptist Church in Gum Spring, VA. Along the way, he gained an appreciation for jazz and developed his skills, to the point that he soon was appearing regularly at the Boar’s Head Inn, the Clifton Inn, and many country clubs in the Charlottesville-Richmond corridor. When he’s not playing the church organ or performing for private parties on his portable keyboards, he works as a certified in-home personal fitness trainer, concentrating on clients in the Lake Anna area.
Rich Johnston is a resident of Louisa County who cut his Jazz teeth in New Jersey before relocating to Zion Crossroads. He studied at Rutgers University with such luminaries as Frank Foster, Paul Jeffries, and Kenny Barron. Rich has performed various musical styles from Classic Jazz, Latin Jazz, R&B, Smooth Jazz and is always on the lookout for the next jam session where anything can happen!
Nicknamed the “Chameleon”, Bruce Middle weaves a tapestry of sounds from Classical to Jazz, Blues to Country and Bluegrass to Funk. He is a composer, arranger, performer, and recording artist with over 35 years in the industry. In addition, Bruce is a highly respected and in-demand educator, offering private lessons, group lessons, workshops, and clinics. He is the Instructor of Guitar for the University of Mary Washington and Director of The Guitar Ensemble. His Private Lessons include instruction in Mandolin, Electric Bass, Piano, Banjo, Ukulele, Guitar, Theory, and Composition.
For more information, go to https://brucemiddlemusic.com/
Dr. Matthew Niess is a Washington, DC based cross-over Edwards Trombonist and Summit label recording artist. He served in The U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own” as lead trombone with The Army Blues Jazz Ensemble and trombonist with The U.S. Army Brass Quintet. He is currently a member of the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra and has taught at Towson, West Chester, and George Mason Universities. In 2021 he became Director of Jazz Studies and Professor of Trombone at Shenandoah Conservatory. He is the founder and director of The Capitol Bones, The National Jazz Workshop, and has appeared as a soloist, clinician, and adjudicator at numerous venues throughout the United States.
Holly graduated from Syracuse University in Musical Theater before launching a performance career that eventually led to a position with the United States Army Band as vocalist. She has recorded and toured as the lead singer with Uptown Vocal Jazz Quartet, and she currently performs and teaches voice in the Washington DC area.
David Smith is a Louisa County resident who performs locally and is supplying the beat for today’s opening rhythm section. This is his second appearance with Lake Anna Jazz at Cooling Pond Brewery.
Joshua Walker is a native of the Richmond area who now resides in Washington, DC where he is on the faculty of Levine Music. He is an in-demand guitarist and performs in a variety of groups, in many musical genres, having studied music at VCU and Peabody Institute, earning his Master of Music in Jazz Studies at Howard University.
Jonathan is an in-demand bass player from Richmond who is currently working with the Kevin Gaines Trio.
Come on. What are you waiting for?
Join the jam.
We welcome players of all skill levels to join in… even if you just toot in the background.
Register your attendance with Lake Anna Jazz so we can get an estimate of the audience size and also keep you informed via email about upcoming events. We’ll enter your name and email into our all-day door prize drawings which include cool merchandise and gift cards. No purchase necessary.
We’re raffling these jazz-themed musical instruments:
Tickets are $10 each and two winners will be drawn.
Enter as often as you like. It’s all for charity!