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20 August 2019SAY shortlisted pianist, Fergus McCreadie kicks off new Linlithgow concert season

Award-winning young jazz pianist Fergus McCreadie opens a new season of Red Door concerts at St Peter’s Church in Linlithgow on Thursday, September 19.

McCreadie, whose debut, Turas, won the Best Album title at the Scottish Jazz Awards this year and has just been shortlisted in the Scottish Album of the Year Award, will be playing in a duo with David Bowden, the bassist from his internationally acclaimed trio.

The pianist has also been shortlisted in the Best Newcomer and Best Album categories of the Parliamentary Jazz Awards, which are now the UK’s most prestigious jazz honours. He previously won Best Instrumentalist at the Scottish Jazz Awards in 2018 and his trio, which features drummer Stephen Henderson alongside McCreadie and Bowden, won the much-coveted Peter Whittingham Jazz Prize in 2016.

Following McCreadie, the Red Door programme welcomes Romanian singer-songwriter Lizabett Russo, English folk singer-guitarist Chris Wood, adventurous fiddle and harp duo, Catriona McKay & Chris Stout, and father and daughter Martin and Eliza Carthy to the beautifully refurbished St Peter’s.

 

Fergus McCreadie (photo by Morgan Shaw)

19 August 2019Saxophonist Tommy Smith continues Edinburgh venue's 40th anniversary celebrations

Saxophonist Tommy Smith plays the third of four concerts he is giving during the Queen’s Hall in Edinburgh’s fortieth anniversary celebrations this year when the group he formed in dedication to his greatest influence, John Coltrane, plays the venue on Thursday October 17.

Smith, who was appointed OBE for services to jazz and education in this year’s New Year Honours List, has had a long association with the Queen’s Hall, having celebrated his twenty-first birthday there in 1988 with a concert that featured him alongside top American duo Chick Corea & Gary Burton.

The Tommy Smith Quartet: Embodying the Light was formed in 2017 to mark the fiftieth anniversary of Coltrane's death and Smith's own fiftieth birthday. He gives a solo saxophone concert to complete the series on December 19.

"The Queen's Hall has been a regular venue for me throughout my career," says Smith. "I can remember aspiring to play there as a young musician and it's been a great pleasure to work there with the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra as well as my own bands."

 

Tommy Smith (photo by Derek Clark)

10 August 2019Top Scottish jazz musicians set for new Leith concert series

Popular Edinburgh promotions Jazz at St James return on Saturday 21st September with guitarist Kevin Mackenzie’s trio opening the autumn series.

Mackenzie, who has worked extensively in both jazz and folk music, recently released his enthusiastically received The Ballad of Future Joe album and his group, which features Mario Caribe on bass and Doug Hough on drums, will be playing music from this recording at St James.

Exciting young pianist Fergus McCreadie’s trio follows on Saturday 26th October. McCreadie and his rhythm team, bassist David Bowden and drummer Stephen Henderson, have been serial award-winners in recent years.

Among their collective successes have been the coveted Peter Whittingham Jazz Prize in 2016 and the Best Album title at the Scottish Jazz Awards 2019, while McCreadie won Best Instrumentalist at the Scottish Jazz Awards 2018 and Bowden won the Young Scottish Jazz Musician of the Year in 2017. Bowden and Henderson also won the Peter Whittingham Jazz Prize with the band Square One and Henderson was chosen as a Jazzwise One to Watch in 2018.

The last concert in the Jazz at St James autumn series, on Saturday 16th November, sees the New Focus Duo – pianist Euan Stevenson and saxophonist Konrad Wiszniewski – present their Classical Connection examination of the common ground between jazz and classical music. At the recent Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival this won them a five-star review from Keith Bruce of The Herald.

Jazz at St James concerts take place at St James Scottish Episcopal Church in John’s Place, Leith. Tickets cost £12 (£8 for under 16s) and are available from 08749 509407 or jazzatstjames18@gmail.com

 

 

Kevin Mackenzie

 

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