For over 43 years the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival has provided a platform to showcase the very best Jazz and Blues artists that the world has to offer. Held over 10 days and with over 170 performances a year, the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival is one of the largest jazz festivals in Europe and creates moving and memorable experiences for the 70,000 people who attend each year.
Offering a snapshot of the Scottish jazz and blues scenes, the festival also showcases a glittering of internationally acclaimed musicians and performers. 2021 saw big names perform both online and in person at Assembly Roxy.
Unable to travel in 2021, Davina and The Vagabonds recorded a special concert for the festival live from Minneapolis; Jacqui Dankworth joined her acclaimed American pianist and vocalist husband Charlie Wood to reinterpret some classic jazz duets; and Alison Burns co-opted one of the world’s foremost acoustic guitarists, Martin Taylor to accompany her rich, smooth and velvety vocals.
Scottish songstress, Georgia Cécile brought a new suite of songs accompanied by a jazz trio and a string quartet; singer Ali Affleck delved in the prohibition era for some vintage New Orleans gems; and Luca Manning presented a world premiere performance featuring handpicked musicians including singer, Cherise Adams-Burnett, and Fergus McCreadie.
2022 hopes to see Jools Holland and his Rhythm and Blues Orchestra return to the festival, which is sure to be another incredible event packed with the very best music from at home and abroad.
The festival is the brainchild of Edinburgh guitarist and banjo player Mike Hart, who launched the first one in 1978. Originally, the festival featured traditional jazz performances played in Edinburgh’s pubs, and it slowly evolved to feature a more diverse range of styles, including the introduction of blues.
The free Mardi Gras and Carnival events have given the festival even wider appeal, and although the festival now attracts major international jazz names from all over the world, it remains true to its on-going commitment to supporting Scottish acts.
For videos visit Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival YouTube channel.