Cork getting ready to ‘jazz it up’ for the 40th year in succession
EXCITING MIX OF INTERNATIONAL ARTISTS LINE UP UNVEILED FOR EUROPE’S TOP JAZZ FESTIVAL
CORK is once again set to reverberate to a vibrant melting pot of music over the forthcoming October bank-holiday weekend with more than 40,000 people set to descend on the city for the annual extravaganza that is the Guinness Jazz Festival.
Now celebrating its 40th anniversary, the festival which began as a local gathering of musicians has evolved into one of the most high-profile jazz events in Europe, drawing some of the world’s top musicians to Leeside.
Over the past four-decades the Cork Guinness Jazz Festival has hosted some of the most influential jazz artists ever to grace the global stage including Ronnie Scott, Ella Fitzgerald, Dizzy Gillespie, Dave Brubeck, Wynton Marsalis, Van Morrison, Buddy Rich, BB King, Gregory Porter, Marcus Miller and Chick Corea to name just a few.
Over recent years festival organisers have taken the brave step of broadening the event’s remit, bringing a more eclectic mix of artists spanning a wide variety of musical genres.
The 40th edition of the festival will see more of the same, with more than 1,000 musicians from more than two-dozen countries set to play venues across the city and county.
This year the stellar line-up will include international acts such as Memphis jazz legend Dee Dee Bridgewater, Grammy Award-winning Kenny Garrett, Nicholas Payton & James Morrison as well as home-grown soul sensation Imelda May. Another highlight will be a special presentation of the music from the biggest selling jazz album of all time, Miles Davis’ ‘Kind of Blue’ courtesy of Gary Crosby’s Nu Troop.
To mark the 40-year milestone, the festival has also partnered with Ronnie’s Scott’s Jazz Club of Soho, a first for any European jazz festival in Europe. Ronnie Scott’s will operate a pop-up jazz club at the Festival Club in the Metropole Hotel, which will feature many Irish and overseas musicians, with the Ronnie Scott’s All Stars Band playing The Everyman Palace on Sunday afternoon.
Speaking at the festival launch Jennifer Gleeson, Guinness Cork Jazz Sponsorship Manager, said the legendary band leader Ronnie Scott was the first international headliner to play the inaugural event.
“It is fitting that as we celebrate 40-years of the festival we have created this exclusive partnership with his famous London jazz club. This vital connection opens up a brilliant opportunity for the festival to connect directly with the vast Ronnie Scott’s Club network of jazz fans all over the world – and to bring more overseas visitors to the event,” she said.
As well as the ticketed gigs, there will be a plethora of free of charge jazz entertainment over the weekend at over 70 venues including pubs, hotels, restaurants and clubs.
On-street entertainment will also feature heavily this year with an open air concert at Emmet Place, headlined by Brian Deady and Paddy Casey, as well as a street parade featuring vibrant street performers, marching bands and even a dedicated jazz bus.
Back by popular demand, the Jazz Fringe will feature free attractions all over the city including the Festival Club at the Metropole Hotel, a Jazz Gospel Service at St Anne’s Church in Shandon, a food fair and open air jam sessions.
For full festival details and to purchase tickets for the 2017 Guinness Cork Jazz Festival log onto www. guinnessjazzfestival.com.
At the launch of the Cork Jazz Festival 2017were, from left: Gary Baus, Guinness Sponsorship Manager Jennifer Gleeson, Brendan Ó Ruaidh & Colette Forde.
Brian Deedy, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Nicholas Payton and Imelda May will all be part of the Guinness Cork Jazz Festival 2017 line-up.