Lionel Richie to open Montreal jazz festival

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The Montreal international jazz festival on Tuesday announced its lineup for the June 25-July 6 event that includes jazz luminaries Sonny Rollins, Bobby McFerrin, Ahmad Jamal and Herbie Hancock.

Lionel Richie and Cassandra Wilson will kick off the festival with an opening gala concert on June 25.

Also featured this year are the Steve Miller Band, the Doobie Brothers, Cyndi Lauper, Smokey Robinson, rising trumpeter Christian Scott, Keith Jarrett's piano-double-bass-drums trio, and the Robert Glasper trio.

Hancock is to play songs from his new album "The Imagine Project."

The Roots and Anti-pop Consortium will offer up some rap, alongside activist poet and "rapper before rap existed" Gil Scott Heron who returns to the stage with his latest recordings.

Experimental jazz saxophonist John Zorn will give three shows, including one with Lou Reed and Laurie Anderson.

For its 31st edition, the jazz festival will also celebrate the 20th anniversary of label Ninja Tune with presentations of raw acts Kid Koala, Bonobo and Ghislain Poirier.