Big Guitar Weekend

This weekend, Friday 4th to Sunday 6th, sees the annual Big Guitar Weekend at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (the former RSAMD). The main interest from the point of view of the hardcore jazz fan is a lunchtime performance by Kevin Mackenzie and Malcolm MacFarlane on Sunday. It’s at 1pm and costs £7.

As well as performing, MacKenzie and MacFarlane have also been leading a (sold-out) jazz guitar course over the weekend. There’s a Big Guitar Weekend student concert at 5pm on Sunday, where some of the participants might be playing. Again it costs £7. There are also concerts by students from the Conservatoire at 6.30pm on Friday and Saturday, although I don’t know if there are any guitarists on the current jazz course.

Alan Sweeney Quintet

As always, there’s a gig at Brel in Ashton Lane on Saturday afternoon from 3pm to 6pm and, whether to tie in with the Big Guitar Weekend or purely by coincidence, this weekend’s performance is by a quintet led by guitarist Alan Sweeney. The rest of the band are Scott Walker (presumably not that one), trumpet; Derek Fairlie, piano; James Lindsay, bass and Ewan Laing, drums. All five are students on the Applied Music course at Strathclyde Uni, and they’ll be playing “a good mix of mainstream and new jazz, including the music of Pat Metheny, Martin Taylor, John Coltrane and John McLaughlin”. There’s no admission fee, so the only cost will be what you spend at the bar.

Nigel Clark, Mario Caribé and Tina Clarke

Finally, Sunday night’s performance at Café Cossachok also features some jazz guitar: Nigel Clark is playing there, in a trio with bassist Mario Caribé and singer and percussionist Tina Clarke. It starts at 9pm and costs £6.