Bristol's third festival for March 2015

Bristol's International Jazz & Blues Festival returns in March 2015 for a third packed long weekend of jazz from Dr John, Lillian Boutté, Alice Zawadzki, Louis Armstrong scholar Ricky Riccardi and more

Building on the success of the last two years, from the inaugural jazz festival in 2013 to its second festival in 2014 which drew around 8,000 attendees, Bristol's International Jazz & Blues Festival returns next March with another impressive programme of music.

Running from Thursday 5 to Sunday 8 March 2015, the festival will feature a range of jazz styles including swing, blues, funk, gospel, electronica and trip-hop with acts heading to Bristol from around the world, as well as the usual free programme of fringe jazz in Colston Hall's foyer.

Headlining the festival is blues and boogie-woogie player Dr John (pictured), visiting Bristol for the first time in 12 years and playing his distinctive style of New Orleans voodoo-flavoured R&B. Other highlights include Bristol festival favourite Pee Wee Ellis who will perform with Huey Morgan of Fun Lovin' Criminals fame, goddaughter of James Brown and soul/acid-jazz singer Carleen Anderson, Ray Gelato & His Giants with their own brand of toe-tapping swing, violinist and improviser Alice Zawadzki, and another Bristol festival favourite, gypsy-swing band Django à la Créole.

Two specially commissioned big band concerts are also sure to draw the crowds to Colston Hall: Cartoon Jazz & the Big Buzzard Boogie Band will put a jazz spin on Disney film tunes, and The Louis Armstrong Story will feature vocalist Lillian Boutté plus a special secret guest. The Louis Armstrong Story concert is part of a weekend celebrating all things Satchmo and will feature Armstrong's original big band scores, last played in 1947. Star of TV show The Wire Clarke Peters will narrate excerpts from Armstrong's autobiography and curator of the Louis Armstrong House Museum, Ricky Riccardi, will deliver a talk on the man and his music.

The full festival programme is as follows:

Friday 6 March

18:00 - 19:15         Paradox Ensemble
19:00 - 20:15         Ray Gelato & His Giants  
20.15 - 21.30         Ainsley Lister Trio
21:30 - 11:30         Bruce / Ilett Big Band Swing Event
Saturday 7 March

12:45 - 14:00         Ricky Riccardi
14:00 - 15:15         Cartoon Jazz & Big Buzzard Boogie Band
15:00 - 16:15         Alice Zawadzki
16:45 - 18:00         Andy Sheppard Quartet
17:15 - 18:30         Django à la Créole
19:30 - 20:45         Clarke Peters
21:00 - 22:30         Carleen Anderson
Sunday 8 March

12:45 - 14:00         Tcha Limberger
14:00 - 15:15         The Louis Armstrong Story
15:00 - 16:15         Slowly Rolling Camera
16:45 - 18:00         Huey Morgan & Pee Wee Ellis Funk Assembly
17:15 - 18:30         Mike Sanchez
19:30 - 20:45         Matt Schofield Trio
21:00 - 22:30         Dr John

Tickets are on sale now and can be booked online at or by calling the box office on 0844 887 1500.

Sally Evans-Darby

post a comment