Celtic Connections, Glasgow’s festival of folk and world music, is already well underway. If you look hard enough, you’ll find some jazz in it.
The one out-and-out jazz concert is at the Mitchell Theatre tomorrow January 27th, where Italian pianist Kekko Fornarelli’s Trio will be appearing, supported by trumpeter Neil Yates with his international trio Five Countries.
On Tuesday 29th, there’s a couple of jazzy duos at Glasgow Art Club. The headliners are saxophonist Iain Ballamy and accordion player Stian Carstensen, and they’re supported by concertina player Simon Thoumire (who has previously appeared in bands led by Kevin MacKenzie) and guitarist Ian Carr. There’s an interview with Carstensen in The Herald.
Thursday 31st is blues night, with the Heritage Blues Orchestra playing at the Royal Concert Hall, supported by blues singer and guitarist Eric Bibb.
There are also several concerts of African music at the festival. Mulatu Astatke played last Sunday (I haven’t seen any reviews).
Tomorrow night (unfortunately clashing with the Kekko Fornarelli concert) there’s Sahara Soul, a triple bill of musicians from Mali: Bassekou Kouyaté with his band Ngoni Ba; Taureg band Tamikrest; and singer Sidi Touré. This is at the Concert Hall.
Legendary Malian singer Salif Keita is performing at the Old Fruitmarket on Friday 1st February.
Finally, as every year, there will doubtless be several musicians best known as jazz players popping up in various bands. I believe Paul Towndrow was involved in last Sunday’s Roaming Roots Review, and Euan Burton will certainly be making a couple of appearances, in the Rua Macmillan Big Band on the 31st and in Rachel Hair’s Trio on the 1st. There may well be more.
Details of concert times, prices, and ticket availability are on the Celtic Connections website.
If you’re undecided about going along to the Kekko Fornerelli / Neil Yates concert tomorrow, here’s a couple of samples of what to expect:
Neil Yates Five Countries Trio