Panoptic Events are delighted to be providing Concert Management support at this years Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival. We will be looking after the George Square Spiegeltent.
Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival 2016: Full Programme Announcement
Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival is one of the top ten Jazz Festivals in Europe, with over 36,000 sales and 67,000 attendances
The 2016 edition, announced today, has one of our most diverse lineups ever with over 170 concerts in the ten days from 15-24 July across a range of Edinburgh venues.
Edinburgh’s distinctive approach sees all styles of jazz and blues presented with equal commitment. The Festival aims to present established jazz and blues lovers with a range of concerts to satisfy connoisseur interests, whilst also offering a raft of events that will appeal to non-specialists. We reach out to encompass soul, r’n’b, hip hop, latin, and other related musics.
It’s a formula that’s working, because the Festival has doubled in size in the last four years.
2016 sees further growth, with the number of events increasing by 15% over 2015.
There are five major concerts at The Festival Theatre, with some of the biggest names from the modern jazz, blues and soul worlds. Our annual concert with Jools Holland and his Orchestra features special guests, Pauline and Gaps from The Selecter; Curtis Stigers returns with his own band after wowing us in our Sinatra special last year; and we also welcome back Scotland’s top soul exiles, The Average White Band, in a bill that also features The James Taylor Quartet. There will be rare Scottish concerts by two musicians who have been giants of world jazz for the last forty years, John McLaughlin and Jan Garbarek.
Mclaughlin and Garbarek will be the headliners of a strong programme strand featuring jazz from Europe. We’re calling it the “Europe Jazz Summit”. With over 30 concerts we feature musicians from Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Slovakia, and Sweden. Established stars like Magnus Öström, Marcin Wasilewski, The Bratislava Hot Serenaders, and Furio di Castri will feature, but so will some of the hottest young musicians, like Amsterdam Guitarist, Reinier Baas; the brilliant Lithuanian vocalist, Viktoria Gecyte; Berlin based jazz/dance/electronica producer, Mop Mop; and the stunning French singer, Cyrille Aimée. In addition to the concerts, Napier University will be hosting a conference on the last fifty years of European Jazz: “Continental Drift”.
There are a host of artists playing the Festival for the first time in 2016, many with exclusive Scottish or UK performances. Our cover artist is the sensational young drummer and singer from New York, Bryan Carter. Amongst the other artists making Festival debuts are Danish swinging vocalist, Mads Mathias; Japanese Hot Club sensation, Tokyo Django Collective; the fresh new sound of Pixel from Norway; the sultry vocals of Ala.Ni; the great new bluesman from Memphis, John Nemeth; and the authentic Mississippi Hill Country blues of Lightnin’ Malcolm. We have soulful Cuban jazz from Dayme Arocena; 60’s soul and r’n’b from Barcelona’s The Excitements; and edgy latin salsa party music from Austin, Texas, with Grupo Fantasma. On the blues front, we welcome one of the true giants of the contemporary scene, Lucky Peterson; while also giving debuts to the great vocalist/bass player from Portland, Oregon, Lisa Mann; the new hit New York vocalist, Sari Schorr; and the high energy showmanship of Californian, Earl Thomas.
Scottish jazz will be well represented, as always – there’s nowhere better to catch up with what’s new and what’s best in the current scene. Pianist, Brian Kellock will feature in an Oscar Peterson style group; in duos with ace New York clarinettist, Ken Peplowski, and SNJO leader, Tommy Smith; and in a quartet with saxophonist, Alan Barnes. Ken Mathieson’s Classic Jazz Orchestra has a programme that plays tunes by Bix Beiderbecke. Paul Harrison’s Sugar Work is one of the hottest new bands to emerge, and look out for features for Brian Molley, Fergus McCreadie, Freddie King, Graeme Stephen and Alan Benzie.
An innovation in 2016 will be Festival Residencies: The New Orleans Swamp Donkeys Traditional Jass Band play four concerts, and so will Festival favourites: The Bratislava Hot Serenaders, The Rad Trads, Hot Antic Jazz Band, and Brian Kellock. We welcome back Mr Sipp, Jon Cleary, Rev Peyton, and Rumba de Bodas, also for multiple shows. There are also residencies for first timers: Budapest Ragtime Band; New Yorkers, Bryan Carter and Emmet Cohen; The Moscow Drug Club; and Lightnin’ Malcolm. Davina & the Vagabonds love Edinburgh. And the feeling’s mutual. She’s back for the first ever ten day residency at the Festival.
The Scottish Government’s Expo Fund makes much of the Festival programme possible, but there are specific concerts that the Festival highlights as the main features of our Expo programme and this year we have an outstanding list:
David Patrick has been commissioned by the Festival to produce Debussy’s “Jeux” for his multi-national band.
Ryan Quigley celebrates Otis Redding’s 75th Birthday with The Commitments lead singer, Andrew Strong, and the great New York drummer and vocalist, Bryan Carter, as his guests.
Konrad Wiszniewski reconnects with his Polish heritage, teaming up with the leading pianist of his generation, Pawel Kazmarcyzk.
Tom Bancroft spearheads the Festival’s new partnership with Torino Jazz Festival, by forming a group with that city’s (and one of Italy’s) top jazz musicians, Furio di Castri.
Thunkfish collaborates with the Italian progressive rock/jazz group, NohayBandTrio.
Whilst spending a year in Japan, Seonaid Aitken met the Django guitar specialist, Fumihiko Kono. He subsequently found fame with the Tokyo Django Collective and now they play their first ever concert together in Edinburgh.
This year, we launch a new venue at the City Art Centre, transforming the top floor gallery into a jazz club loft scene. Together with the Spiegeltents in St Andrew Square and George Square, over half of the Festival’s programme takes place in venues specially assembled for the occasion. Other venues include Queen’s Hall, The Festival Theatre Studio, The Jazz Bar and Heriots Rugby Club.
Brian Fallon, Chair of Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival, said “This year’s programme boasts a stellar international line-up with musicians converging on Edinburgh from all over the world to present over 170 concerts, plus the Festival’s two free events– The Mardi Gras and the Edinburgh Festival Carnival – will take place on the 16th and 17th July respectively”.
Councillor Richard Lewis, Edinburgh’s Festivals and Events Champion, said: “With over 170 gigs, including rare Scottish concerts by John McLaughlin and Jan Garbarek, there will be an amazing selection of artists at the Edinburgh International Jazz Festival this year. The 2016 programme spans a huge range of styles and specialisms, from established stars to new names and everything in-between. For the first time the City Art Centre will be used as a Jazz Festival venue when the top floor transforms into a jazz club loft scene. It will be a stunning location and it’s fantastic to see that over half of this summer’s festival programme will take place in venues specially assembled for the occasion.”
Ian Smith, Head of Music, Creative Scotland, said: “The big names are out in force at the 2016 edition of the Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival. I have been around long enough to have heard the Average White Band at the start of their incredible journey and to have toured with John McLaughlin so they are particularly welcome back to Edinburgh. To see Ken Mathieson’s Classic Jazz Orchestra along with Brian Kellock and Tommy Smith – all deserved giants of the Scottish jazz scene is great to see with the Expo Fund allowing commissions and performances from David Patrick, Ryan Quigley, Konrad Wiszniewski and Tom Bancroft. 2016 looks like a great year for jazz in Scotland!”
Tickets are available from midday on Monday 9 May:
Online at www.edinburghjazzfestival.com
By phone on 0131 473 2000.
In person from The Hub, Castlehill, Edinburgh, EH1 2NE.
Twitter (@edinburghjazz, #edjazzfest)