Jazz sets the Edinburgh Fringe swinging

Written by | Festivals, News

Scottish jazz features prominently in a new pop-up venue on the Edinburgh Fringe during August.

Helena Kay

Saxophonists Tommy Smith and Helena Kay, pianists Fergus McCreadie and Brian Kellock, guitarist Graeme Stephen, drummer Tom Bancroft and singer Georgia Cécile are among the leading names included in the programme at the Rose Theatre in Edinburgh’s colourful Rose Street from Friday 4th to Monday 28th August.

Graeme Stephen and his duo partner, guitarist and poet Don Paterson open the programme on the 4th. Paterson, who co-led the Celtic-jazz group Lammas with saxophonist Tim Garland before his poetry career took off, recently published a memoir, Toy Fights, which has been hailed as a classic of its kind. He and Stephen are united by their shared love of John Abercrombie and Bill Frisell.

Stephen will also present live soundtracks to the classic films The Penalty and Nosferatu on Wednesday 9 and Sunday 13.

Stars of the recent Buxton International Festival’s jazz weekend, Tommy Smith and the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra’s regular pianist, Peter Johnstone, play on Sunday 27, and Helena Kay’s trio play on Saturday 12. Fergus McCreadie features in a duo with saxophonist Matt Carmichael (Wednesday 16) and in Carmichael’s quintet (Thursday 24) and Brian Kellock presents his swinging tribute to guitarist and raconteur Marty Grosz (Sunday 13).

Tom Bancroft pays homage to drummer Paul Motian in Motian & Me (Friday 11 and Thursday 17) and his saxophone-playing twin, Phil, in addition to featuring in Motian & Me, plays a trio date on Monday 14. The multi-award-winning Georgia Cécile plays two concerts, on Tuesday 22 and Wednesday 23.

The programme also includes the hard grooving Nimbus Sextet, the manouche-styled Viper Swing, Glasgow-based jazz-funk-folk juggernaut Fat-Suit, saxophone-guitar pairing Konrad Wiszniewski & Haftor Medboe, singer Niki King, the free-wheeling AKU, and Trio Magico, who specialise in the music of Brazilian icon Egberto Gismonti.

Douglas Robertson, of the Soundhouse organisation who are running the venue in partnership with Bellfield Brewery, said: “We’re really pleased to be presenting a showcase of the best of Scottish music at this year’s Fringe. Along with the jazz programme, we have some of the best folk and traditional musicians and we’re looking forward to letting visitors to the Fringe experience the high quality that’s on Edinburgh’s doorstep.”

Tickets for all shows at the Rose Theatre are available here at their website.

Last modified: July 26, 2023