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I generally believe there’s far too much marketing in the modern world, much of it dedicated to persuading you to acquire something which is at best unnecessary and at worst harmful (like a Tory government). This year’s Glasgow Jazz Festival seems to be going the other way, with very little publicity about the events. Since my last post on the Festival, there’s still been no formal press launch of the programme, and no sign of a published brochure. More information is now up on the Festival web site, but it’s probably still worth browsing the individual venues’ web sites to find out exactly what’s on when.

GIJF concerts which have caught my eye since I last previewed the Festival are:

  • The Big Chris Barber Band. June 20th, City Halls.
  • The Helle Lund Quartet. Danish pianist performing with her regular trio and saxophonist Raymond MacDonald. June 20th, Recital Room.
  • Franco-Beninoise singer Mina Agossi. One of the more interesting jazz singers around. She likes to stretch out on tunes by Jimi Hendrix, so don’t expect a straightforward recital of pieces from the Great American Songbook. June 21st, Tron Theatre.
  • Polar Bear. Two tenor electric jazz. June 21st, Arches.
  • Tord Gustavsen Ensemble (with Tore Brunborg on sax). Scandinavian. On ECM. You can probably guess what he sounds like. Actually, he’s very good. Just don’t expect much in the way of blues. June 23rd, Tron Theatre.
  • Trio VD. Loud electric jazz from Leeds. June 23rd, Stereo.
  • Dr Lonnie Smith. Funky, groovy R’n’B-drenched organ playing from the Blue Note recording star. He’s not to be confused with Lonnie Liston Smith. The excellent Jonathan Kreisberg is on guitar. June 26th, Old Fruitmarket.
  • The Glasgow Improvisers Orchestra plus the George Burt/Susan Alcorn duo. Burt describes Alcorn as “a fantastic Pedal steel guitar player; utterly unique, an acquired taste for the mainstream jazz listener, but one worth acquiring”. June 26th (afternoon), Tron Theatre.
  • Steve Turre. American trombone (and conch shell!) virtuoso brings his Quartet to Glasgow. June 26th (evening), Tron Theatre.
  • The Burt MacDonald Quintet with Keith Tippett. Local melodic free jazz mavericks renew their acquaintance with great English improvising pianist. June 27th (afternoon), Tron Theatre.
  • Homegrown. Mini-festival within the festival promoting local talent. June 26th and 27th, various venues.

The programme’s shaping up nicely. I just wished it was being a bit more heavily promoted.
Glasgow International Jazz Festival
Tron Theatre web site.
Glasgow Concert Halls web site (for the Recital Room and City Halls gigs mentioned above, plus info about what’s on at the Concert Hall and Strathclyde Suite).

Update, Tuesday 11th May

  1. If you’re on the Jazz Glasgow mailing list, you should by now have received an email promoting the Festival, although for some reason it doesn’t mention any of the concerts at the Tron. As Euphbass says in her comment below, the official launch event took place last night.
  2. There was an interview with Martin Taylor in the Herald last Friday, in which he talks about his online Guitar Academy, which sounds like something which might be worth checking out if you’re learning the guitar.