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Lopez to host Playboy Jazz Festival

Los Angeles - George Lopez is taking over as master of ceremonies of the annual Playboy Jazz Festival.

The comedian was announced as the festival's new host Thursday at an event at the Playboy Mansion.

George Lopez, center, master of ceremonies for this year's Playboy Jazz Festival, poses with musicians Quincy Jones, left, and Herbie Hancock following a news conference at the Playboy Mansion on Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013 in Los Angeles. The 35th Anniversary Playboy Jazz Festival will be held at the Hollywood Bowl on June 15 and 16. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP). Credit: Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP

“This is iconic,” said the former star of the ABC sitcom “George Lopez” and the TBS talk show “Lopez Tonight.” “I've never been here before. I was married for 17 years. I couldn't even have a Playboy air freshener.”

Bill Cosby previously served as the festival's host for more than 30 years. Cosby was a fixture at the gathering of jazz luminaries since the first festival was held in 1979.

Lopez said Cosby called him to give him advice on the gig. His tips included not letting musicians in his dressing room “because they'll eat all your food and drink all your drink,” joked Lopez.

This year's show will feature such artists as Herbie Hancock, Jeffrey Osborne, Sheila E. and Grace Kelly, who were on hand at Thursday's event.

The Playboy Jazz Festival is scheduled for June 15 and 16 at the Hollywood Bowl. - Sapa-AP

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