Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival
Holland and his Rhythm and Blues Orchestra play the Festival Theatre on 19 July with guest vocalists including Pauline Black and Ruby Turner. Holland’s live shows straddle both the jazz and blues elements of the festival with a mix of boogie-woogie, swing, jazz and R&B.
Fans of 1970s band AWB will be keen to see Stuart who performs at Assembly Hall on the last night of the festival. AWB were the first Scottish act to top both the US singles and albums charts, and Stuart’s career has seen him work with the likes of Diana Ross, George Benson and Chaka Khan as well as touring and recording extensively with Sir Paul McCartney. All of which means that audiences can expect an evening of classic funk and soul from one of Scotland’s most accomplished live acts.
On the Jazz side of the festival, The Big Chris Barber Band at George Square Spiegeltent on 17 July provides an increasingly rare opportunity to see the trombonist, bassist and band leader who is rightly hailed as a jazz legend and icon of British traditional jazz.
Of course, the festival is not all about established names and there are a lot of rising stars and artists who will be new to UK audiences. Georgia Cecile, who has emerged as the major singer of the new Scottish jazz scene, combining classics, original material and reinventions of modern pop songs, opens for Jacqui Dankworth at Assembly Hall on 20 July. Anyone who normally avoids turning up until the main act hits the stage would be well-advised to make an exception to their rule this time around.
New Yorker Popa Chubby comes to Assembly Hall on 14 July for his first ever Edinburgh appearance. With a performance style described as “the stooges meets Buddy Guy, Motorhead meets Muddy Waters, and Jimi Hendrix meets Robert Johnson” the show should appeal to an audience who might not have expected to find anything for them at the festival.
Likewise, “Like a Cat Tied To a Stick” Radiohead Re-imagined at Piccolo on 21 July, offers a reimagined take on Radiohead’s music by a ten-piece from Glasgow. They’re not the first people to have attempted this, as Radiohead’s own jazz leanings have led to many modern jazz artists looking to them for inspiration, but the intimate nature of the venue should make for a great show.
Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival runs from 12 to 21 July.