Clash of the titans for jazz fans at Cork festival
THE programme of this year's Cork Jazz Festival (October 22-25) is the most promising in years, with a wealth of choice on stage from Friday until Sunday.
On the opening night, the Tom Rainey Trio -- Ingrid Laubrock (saxes), Mary Halvorson (guitar) and Tom Rainey (drums) -- share a concert with the Bill Carrothers Trio in the Triskel at the River Lee (formerly Jurys). Regrettably, if you go to hear them you will miss Tina May (vocals) in the Festival Club.
There is a third choice -- the Robert Glasper Experiment in the Everyman Palace Theatre -- but that only applies if your taste runs to hip-hop.
Charles McPherson is the unmissable attraction on Saturday afternoon at the Everyman, where the great alto-player's quartet shares the bill with the Charlie Haden Quartet West.
More excitement that night when the Herbie Hancock Quintet plays at the same venue. This concert clashes with Louis Stewart's at the River Lee, but there'll be another chance to hear Louis late on Sunday night in the Festival Club.
On Sunday afternoon, it's decision time again: the Tord Gustavsen Ensemble at the Everyman, or the Christine Tobin Quartet in the Clarion Hotel? The singer's concert is being recorded for BBC Radio 3's Jazz Line-up, presented by Julian Joseph.
Three singers perform together on Sunday night in the River Lee: Norma Winstone, David Linx and Maria Pia De Vito, accompanied by Huw Warren (piano).
Other venues include the Savoy Theatre, the Firkin Crane and, of course, the action-packed Guinness Festival Club.
Three days before the festival, on Tuesday October 19, Swiss vocalist Isa Wiss ends her tour of Ireland with the Greg Felton Trio in the Cork Arts Theatre.
Meanwhile, back in Dublin, Seamus Blake (tenor sax) joins Mark McKnight (guitar), Ross Stanley (Hammond organ) and James Maddren (drums) in JJ Smyth's tonight, and on Tuesday night Richie Buck-ley pays tribute to his father, the late Dick Buckley, in the same venue.