For more than 25 years, Jean Germain captured images of Big Band era legends in performances at the annual Sarasota Jazz Festival. Photographs of regulars - like Milt Hinton - show them at various stages in their careers. Other images showcase well kwn festival visitors like Tito Puento, Gerry Mulligan, Cleo Laine, Doc Cheatham, George Shearing, Diana Krall and Lionel Hampton.Unlike traditional studio, rehearsal and performance pictures, these jazz portraits reveal a love affair between the photographer and her subjects, and a unique aspect of the passion and energy that kept many of these jazz greats performing into their 80s and 90s.Whether it's Sweets Edison and Soky Young reuniting after 30 years, Bucky and John Pizzarelli - father and son guitarists - playing together, or Eartha Kitt showing that she has still great legs at 80, Jean's photos portray more than the pleasure of these artists making music. Her lively images convey the energy, passion and spirit of these jazz greats, for whom music burns like an immortal flame, matter what their age.
Jean Germain became a professional photographer after retiring from a career teaching gifted children. Besides memorable shots of jazz musicians, her work includes infrared, color, and black-and-white photographs depicting nature, architecture and the human body. Her evocative images have appeared in juried shows, publications, galleries and museums across the country, and they hang in over 40 private and corporate collections.