The historic capital of Scotland hosts a series of live jazz and blues concerts during the month of July. Within the centre of the city 10 venues host the festival, including large theatre halls, a dedicated jazz bar and a local rugby club. The Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival has featured acts such as English guitarist John McLaughlin, having previously played with jazz legend Miles Davis and the more experimental Mahavishnu Orchestra. Tokyo Django Collective from Japan, America’s Curtis Stigers and Scotland’s own Ken Mathieson, with his classic jazz band have all appeared. The long running festival started in 1978 with banjo player Mike Hart.
Edinburgh has its own international airport half an hour away, or you can arrive by train into the city centre. Local buses will help you reach the area and Waverly Station is in the heart of the activities, with all venues within walking distance. Performance times will depend on each venue, the majority being held in the evening. There are also Sunday afternoon blues sessions. Prices for the festival vary on each event, although discounts are available on multiple bookings. Children under 16 go to concerts held at Queen’s Hall and Spiegeltents for free.
With so many shows don’t limit yourself to just one or two, use the “My Festival” planner on the official website which will help with your own personalised programme. When booking more than 5 shows take advantage of the early bird discount. There are also some free events, or tickets for shows are available from the main hub 30-minutes prior to opening. Any of the big acts, or those in smaller venues, buy in advance in case they sell out. Some shows will have last minute £5 offers available to students, or you can always volunteer to help and gain free access.
When booking a place to stay for the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival, choose from a selection of houses, flats, spare rooms, Bed and Breakfasts and many other private rentals close to the city centre. Wherever you choose to stay it is easy to get around by public transport. Check our accommodation in Edinburgh.
While at the festival you will be near the impressive Edinburgh Castle, not too far from Calton Hill and Arthur’s Seat for a view over the city. You can go shopping in Princes Street or visit the Royal Yacht Britannia, which is within a short journey of this beautiful city.
Find out about the 2017 programme of events, tickets for Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival, the artists, venues and maps, download a brochure for the festival, get involved, volunteering and jobs, the jazz and blues carnival and much more at the official website.
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