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The Jazz scene in Scotland has always been closely related to what has been happening in the rest of the UK, Europe and the USA. Particularly in relation to dance music where Scots have had a love affair with dancing and has been awash with dance venues throughout the land and not just in the large urban centres of Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee & Aberdeen. Many of the smaller holiday towns and villages had dance venues to cater for hoards of holiday makers as well as local communities, each with their favourite band who could play all the current dance hits like the 'Hokey Cokey,' 'Alexander's Rag Time Band,' 'The Charleston' or later Glen Miller's 'In The Mood.' Jazz music fans also had the opportunity to see and hear their hero's at first hand. UK tours by international superstars like Louis Armstrong would often take in dates in Scotland where huge attendance's and adoring fans could be guaranteed.

There were also many influences during the second world war when the swing music of American GI's like the big band sound of the Glen Miller Orchestra made a huge impact. Scots musicians like musicians of other nations learned to master the instruments and play the tunes well enough to satisfy a local population that had a history steeped in a deep love of dancing. In the 50's Trad Jazz bands like the Clyde Valley Stompers were all the rage fueled by the success of English artists like Kenny Ball or Acker Bilk and as such no individual Scottish talent stands out until the onset of 'skiffle' pioneered by Folk legend Jimmie MacGregor and brought to prominence by Glaswegian Lonnie Donegan.

  1. Sophie Bancroft
  2. Susanne Bonnar
  3. Hugh Burns
  4. Nigel Clark
  5. Brenda Cochrane
  6. Mickey Deans
  7. Fiona Duncan
  8. Fraser Fifield
  9. Corrina Hewitt
  10. Brian Kellog
  11. Carol Kidd
  12. Laura MacDonald
  13. Billy MacGregor
  14. Kenny Mathieson
  15. George McGowan
  16. Willie O'Neil
  17. George Penman
  18. Annie Ross
  19. Tommy Smith
  20. Fraser Spiers
  21. Martin Taylor
  22. Bobby Wishart
  23. Konrad Wiszniewski
  • Festivals
  • April
  • Orkney Islands
  • May
  • Isle of Bute
  • June
  • Glasgow International Jazz
  • July
  • Edinburgh
  • September
  • Hawick Jazz & Blues
  • Islay Jazz Festival

However, not all jazz was dance music, during the 50's, singers and players like Billie Holiday, Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, John Coltrane, Miles Davis & Dizzy Gillespie catered to a more modern, sophisticated and discerning taste, the listener, a taste that gave birth to the 'cool.' Much of what we consider as Jazz in Scotland during the 60's and 70's is derived from this 'cool' strand and could be heard throughout the country in the many Jazz clubs and bars. Today the world has become closer and many of our Jazz musicians enjoy healthy reputations abroad. Players such as saxophonist Tommy Smith and singers Annie Ross are well respected by the great who they have played with on the worlds stage. Into the 21st century the Scottish Jazz scene has never been healthier with clubs, festivals and other events catering to International & Local artistes and audiences with a ravenous appetite for all that's good about live Jazz in Scotland.

If you would like to add, contribute or advertise on this page please contact us in the first instance at the e-mail address below.

 

 

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