Just unveiled is the list of performers booked for this year’s Cheltenham Jazz Festival (which is curated by Jamie Cullum and runs from 2nd to 5th of May 2018) and at first glance, it’s a jaw-dropping one. If you’re an R&B fan then the presence of the legendary (Sir) Van Morrison, along with silky southern soulstress Randy Crawford and ballsy blues belter, Beth Hart, will no doubt gain your approval. Long-running San Francisco funk aggregation, Tower Of Power, are also scheduled to appear, as is Ireland’s highly-regarded Imelda May as well as the UK’s own sweet songbird, Corinne Bailey Rae and neo-soul man, Jordan Rakei. And if you’re a fan, perchance of pop-soul veteran Rick ‘Never Gonna Give You Up’ Astley, you’ll enjoy the prospect of hearing the 52-year-old St. Helens singer putting his own spin on the Great American Songbook in the company of Ronnie Scott’s Big Band.
But jazz, of course, is the core music of the festival and jazz devotees – ranging from the hard core aficionados to casual fans and the Johnnie-come-latelies – will find much to satisfy their tastes. Tenor saxophonists Kamasi Washington, Donny McCaslin, and UK free jazz legend Evan Parker led Cheltenham’s horn front line. Talking of horns, Grammy-nominated US vocal sensation, Jazzmeia Horn, is due to perform as are fellow singers China Moses, Zara McFarlane, and rising star Anoushka Lucas.
In terms of jazz instrumentalists, the festival has booked the UK’s own Courtney Pine (whose band will be augmented by noted UK soul veteran, Omar), US bassist Christian McBride’s Big Band, British guitarist Rob Luft, and the critically-acclaimed UK bands, Portico Quartet, Roller Trio, and Dinosaur. Drummer Moses Boyd – one half of Moses & Binker – is set to perform with his band, Exodus. Virtuoso violinist, Nigel Kennedy, who plays both classical music and jazz, is also set to perform at Cheltenham this year.
Tickets go on sale to members from February 28th and on general sle from March 7th
For more info go to: https://www.cheltenhamfestivals.com/jazz/