Revellers wind down after all that jazz

Jazz bars, rhythm rooms, the Festival Club at the Met — the unmistakable sound of the October bank holiday weekend wound down to its final few touts last night as the 37th Guinness Cork Jazz festival drew to a close.

Revellers wind down after all that jazz

Despite the inclement weather, pubs and clubs enjoyed plenty of custom over the four days, giving a €2m boost to the local economy, according to festival organisers.

Artistic director Jack McGouran described it as “the most successful Guinness Cork Jazz Festival in a decade” and sellout concerts at the Everyman, Cork Opera House, Triskel Christchurch and CIT Cork School of Music added weight to his claim.

Imelda May, Michel Legrand and Dianne Reeves were in strong demand and indeed Michel was unveiled as the recipient of the Guinness Jazz Legend Award, joining such luminaries as Jimmy Smith and Herbie Hancock.

For those keen to brush up on their own skills in churning out a feast of blues, bebop and boogie woogie, there were plenty of free workshops and masterclasses.

On the family end, there was plenty of free daytime entertainment around the city with marching bands and ‘Jazz on the Plaza’ courtesy of a special outdoor stage outside the Opera House where crowds gave an enthusiastic reception to equally enthusiastic performers.

European bands gathered for a rousing jam session featuring the New York Brass band, Beat n’ Blow and the Lamarotte Jazz Band.

In Daunt Square Plaza, the Blarney Concert Band added a ‘Touch of Blarney’ while Monday night in the Met played out to the distinctive sounds of the Art Crimes Band, an Irish-based music collective specialising in World Fusion music.

Papa Zitas, Ireland’s definitive Motown Big Band Experience, took proceedings past midnight for those hardy jazz lovers for whom the once a year event is far, far too seldom.

The good news from festival organisers is that planning is already under way for the 2015 Guinness Cork Jazz Festival.

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