Jazz Ireland Statement of Closure

Hello everyone, it is with a heavy heart that I must announce the closure of Jazz Ireland.

Jazz Ireland was a project I created with the primary focus of supporting the Irish jazz scene and helping it grow. For seven years, I worked tirelessly on the project without any funding, determined to make a difference. I am proud of what I accomplished, I got to work with some incredible people whom are now lifelong friends and I’m grateful for the opportunities it provided.

But unfortunately, that time has come to an end.

Getting funded was always the goal, but as a disabled person I can’t get funding without severe penalties. When I started this project, I didn’t know how bad the situation was. I have tried for years to change the rules, to make it easier for people like me to access the arts, but to no avail. Despite my efforts to speak with government officials, arts organisations, disability organisations and advocate for change, nothing has been done to rectify this situation. And it looks like nothing will.

Max Zaska selected for WRITE RECORD PERFORM residency with IMC & Triskel

Improvised Music Company (IMC) and Triskel Arts Centre are delighted to announce the winner of their WRITE RECORD PERFORM, a programme which allows a professional musician working in jazz or creative improvised music dedicated time, space and budget to develop a new musical concept in a holistic way.

After an extensive application process, guitarist and composer Max Zaska has been selected as the winner of WRITE RECORD PERFORM in 2023.

With a budget of up to €10,000 for the project, the artist will also have physical space to develop work at Triskel in Cork and at IMC’s new home for jazz The Cooler @ The Complex in Dublin. Mentorship and guidance will also be available for the artist from Triskel and IMC.

Max said; “I’m absolutely delighted to be chosen for the WRITE RECORD PERFORM residency programme. The work that will come out of this programme will not only benefit me, but 4 other songwriters in collaboration. The new music we create, record, and perform will have a long-lasting effect on all of our careers as artists. My deepest thanks to IMC and Triskel Arts Centre for your support. I’m excited to be returning to Cork and am buzzing to perform in Triskel Christchurch.”

Max Zaska is a guitarist, songwriter, musical director, and producer best known for his feel-good blend of modern funk, neo-soul, and indie jazz. With his band, ZASKA, Max brings his original songs to life through collaborations with many of Ireland’s rising stars, beginning with his first vocalist, Hozier. His critically acclaimed debut album, It Takes A Village, features over 25 performers including Wyvern Lingo and Loah.

Grammy Award nominated & ECM artists to headline Bray Jazz Festival 2023

Bray Jazz Festival makes a welcome return to the annual calendar, and has announced yet another great line up of international talent it will bring to Irish shores on the May Bank Holiday weekend.

One of the most exciting young pianists in contemporary American jazz is amongst the international stars who are on their way to headline this year’s Bray Jazz Festival. Six-times Grammy Award nominated, Gerald Clayton was signed to the prestigious Blue Note jazz label in 2022.

The 38 year old pianist has been a fixture in the band of legendary saxophonist Charles Lloyd for the past decade, and has toured and recorded with such notable jazz stars as Roy Hargrove, Terri Lynne Carrington, Diana Krall and Dianne Reeves.

Returning on the May Bank Holiday weekend (April 28th-30th next) for its 22nd year, Bray Jazz Festival will also feature German instrumentalist of the year and ECM recording artist Julia Hulsmann’s Quartet, and will welcome back the one-time Esbjorn Svensson Trio drummer Magnus Ostrom, as part of bassist Lars Daniellson’s Liberetto Quartet, also featuring guitarist John Paricelli and pianist Gregory Privat.

This year’s festival will present double-bill performances at Mermaid Arts Centre each night, and will stage double-day daytime shows at the County Wicklow Arts Centre venue on the Saturday and Sunday afternoons of the May Bank Holiday weekend.

Elsewhere there will be early evening matinees at Bray Town Hall each night, with Swiss drummer Florian Arbenz Elemental Quartet – featuring award-winning Dutch saxophonist Tineka Postma and two times World Accordion Prizewinner Joao Barradas – London bassist Ruth Goller’s Skylla, which features Dublin born singer Lauren Kinsella - and two-times British jazz singer of the year Ian Shaw, amongst those appearing.

This year’s festival will be the 22nd iteration of Bray Jazz Festival, and follows the festivals return after a two years Covid absence, in 2022. Bray Jazz has established a reputation for showcasing some of the best known names in contemporary jazz, and in recent years has featured such American greats as John Scofield, Dave Douglas, Joe Lovano and Bill Frisell, while amongst the giants of European jazz to appear have been pianists Bobo Stenson and Tord Gustavsen. The festival has also established a name for showcasing young stars on the rise, and has brought performers such as Marius Neset, Ambrose Akinmusere and Yazz Ahmed to Irish audiences.

This year’s Bray Jazz Festival will platform an array of great Irish performers too – with Irish projects including new music by Ronan Guilfoyle – 96 Miles – a tribute to Miles Davis, Sean Carpio’s Bog Bodies, saxophonist Michael Buckley’s new quartet ‘Ebb and Flow’, bassist Cormac O’Brien’s Art Blakey tribute, HIP – The Art Blakey Charts and Matthew Jacobson’s Insufficient Funs, amongst those appearing as part of Mermaid Arts Centre double bill presentations.

Elsewhere there will be live music throughout the bank holiday weekend at Bray’s popular Harbour Bar, and jazz trail gigs taking place at bar and hotel venues across the north Wicklow town.

Full details about this year's festival are posted at: www.brayjazz.com, where tickets are now on sale.

Louis Stewart – Out On His Own

The recently reactivated Livia Records announces the release of a newly re-mastered edition of Louis Stewart’s milestone and career best solo album, “Out On His Own” on 24th February 2023.

Recorded in late 1976 and released in 1977 (LP and cassette) and CD in 1995, this new edition includes 3 previously unreleased tracks, a 16-page booklet with extensive sleeve notes and several previously unseen photographs.

About “Out On His Own”

“Out On His Own” is a fitting title for Louis Stewart as he is perhaps the only Irish jazz musician to attain international front-rank status. This solo record features a mix of lead only and rhythm with lead tracks with a repertoire of Jazz and American Songbook standards, contemporary composers (Chick Corea, Steve Swallow etc.) plus an interpretation of an Irish traditional tune and a self-composed blues.

Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown Musician-in-Residence Scheme - Applications now open

Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council Arts Office and Music Network invite applications for the 2023 dlr Musicians-in-Residence Scheme. 

Now in its 9th year, the scheme provides musicians with space and time to create new work, develop their skills, collaborate with other artists and showcase their music. 

Successful artists will receive funding up to a maximum award of €5000, a space to work in and advice and mentoring to support their career development. Audiences will also have an opportunity to engage with the resident musicians at a series of public performances in Dún Laoghaire. 

Three residencies are available to musicians working in any genre of music, from rock to pop, classical to trad and everything in between.  Applicants must be able to demonstrate a strong connection to Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown, or propose a project that links with the area, for example taking inspiration from the location or by engaging with local communities or musicians. 

CoisCéim introduces a new beat this January with their latest performance The Piece With The Drums by David Bolger

Combining high energy jazz notes and upbeat rhythms, the performance is set to lift audiences from their Winter blues

CoisCéim, one of Ireland’s leading dance companies, presents their latest jazz inspired performance, The Piece With the Drums from 17th- 28rd January, 2023 in Project Arts Centre, Dublin. Building on the critical success of GO TO THE BLAZES, David Bolger and CoisCéim present a pulsating, magical theatrical experience, driving a dance narrative between dancer and percussion. 

Directed and choreographed by David Bolger, with music, beats and everything in between by pioneering Jazz percussionist Conor Guilfoyle, this major new work is a colourful exploration of relationships, spirituality, and our connection to rhythm, life and the cosmos. It showcases the jazz drum kit and its elements, breaking down the notion of rhythm through the dancers movements, the beats and the very construction of the drum kit itself. In imagining the piece, both David and Conor, look to question the depth of the impact rhythm has on our lives.

The Jones Way Releases New Album “We Are Human”

“WE ARE HUMAN”, the new album of Annalisa Bruschini and Silvia Segatori aka The Jones Way is available from today, 11th November 2022, on all digital platforms.

The new work of the Bray-based band, established in 2012, comes from the necessity to express themselves. In 10 original songs, “We Are Human” enhances the intricacy of the human being, how fragile and vulnerable we all are, but still so beautiful and strong. Moreover, they talk about fundamental values such as acceptance and love for oneself, the empathy towards others and the  respect for the Earth.

Musically speaking, this new work sounds more mature, the complexity of its realization fully reflects the professional and personal growth of the two Artists; they challenged themselves with a continuous research of new sounds, playing around with vocal harmonizations, orchestrations and electronic music elements.