The 31st edition of the Red Sea Jazz Festival will take place at its regular Port of Eilat berth August 27-30. As usual artistic director, and saxophonist, Eli Degibri has put together a mix of international stars and local acts, with some extramural entertainment thrown in for good measure.The big names from the Stateside jazz community include the likes of drummer Brian Blade, saxophonist Wayne Escoffery, trumpeter Christian Scott and pianist Aaron Goldberg. And Degibri will not only be pulling the strings backstage, he will also be contributing to the onstage entertainment when he fronts a big band that will pay tribute to some of the great divas of jazz over the years. The instrumental substratum will be overlain with star spots by such leading local vocalists as Dikla, Miri Mesika and Marina Maximilian.There will be quite a few crossover shows over the four days, including veteran jazz pianist Ofer Portugaly’s Jazzing It Up show, based on the recently released album of the same name, which features a stellar lineup of jazz, rock and pop artists. For the Eilat gig, Portugaly will be joined by CD contributors guitarist-vocalist Alon Eder, vocalist-percussion Doron Talmon from the Jane Bordeaux folk trio and veteran pop singer Leah Shabbat.Entertainment, on a grand scale, will be provided by Al McKay’s Earth Wind & Fire Experience, which feeds off the bestselling work of the eponymous American band which made it big in the Seventies with a string of R&B, soul, funk and disco hits.Other shows to look out for down south include New Yorkbased Israeli jazz guitarist Avi Rothbard, American jazz and blues singer Catherine Russell, Brazilian guitarist Yamandu Costa, who will join forces with Latin-oriented Israeli keyboardist Roee Ben-Sira, and American jazz pianist Johnny O’Neal. Longtime New Yorkbased Israeli flutist Hadar Noiberg is also in the mix – she will play with percussionist Oded Aloni – as are envelope-pushing jazz sextet Hagiga, a trio led by drummer Noam David and afrobeat outfit Hoodna Orchestra.For tickets and more information: https://redseajazz.co.il/ and http://www.eventim.co.il.