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Culture Ireland awards delegate bursaries for jazzahead! digital 2021

Culture Ireland have generously awarded 10 Delegate Bursaries to Irish-based artists and promoters to attend the digital edition of jazzahead!, the industry's most important international jazz tradeshow and showcase, this April 29th-May 2nd. They will attend online as part of an Irish jazz contingent led by Improvised Music Company.

Improvised Music Company will also be representing the wider Irish jazz scene at this important event.

Musicians - Want to get your music heard by European promoters at jazzahead?

Details of our dedicated Irish playlist are available HERE, please apply and share!

The 10 chosen delegates have each been working prolifically in Ireland for a number of years and represent a coterie of important export-ready work to bring to the international arena at jazzahead!.

jazzahead! is one of the most important international professional markets for jazz and improvised music of all persuasions. The live version of the four-day event usually attracts more than 17000 people, including 3,000 industry attendees from over 55 countries, representing hundreds of concert and festival bookers, labels, publishers, distributors, managers and the world's media.

For the digital edition of jazzahead! participants will have access to:

  • 1:1 Networking/Match-making sessions based on profiles/interests or previous arrangement
  • 1:1 speed-dating to quickly connect with random other participants
  • Panel sessions on a wide range of topics, with the option to interact with presenters via chat etc.
  • Break-out rooms after panel sessions, mirroring the post-conference foyer chat
  • Live-streaming and on-demand access to Showcase concerts
  • A list of contact details for all other participants who agree to publication

The jazzahead! 2021 bursary recipients are:

With jazz music well and truly in his blood, Charlie is the son of singer Mia Parsons and jazz guitarist Nigel Mooney (Ireland's King of the Blues - BBC). From an early age he was immersed in music, leading him to graduate from Newpark Music School with an honours degree in Jazz Performance, graduating top of his class. He is currently undertaking a masters degree in jazz performance in Groningen. For several years he has performed as a band leader at the Bray & Cork jazz festivals in Ireland and as a guest vocalist with the Dublin City Jazz Orchestra at the Limerick jazz festival. He has performed multiple times as a guest vocalist and rhythm guitarist respectively with the Hot House Big Band and the Downtown Bigband. In 2018 he released a live studio session of an organ trio called The Charlie Moon Organisation and his upcoming sextet albumincludes original material, arrangements of old standards and arrangements of some modern electronic music all for tenor, trumpet, piano trio, guitar and voice.

Kevin Brady has released his compositions on three critically acclaimed albums as a leader with internationally-recognised record companies. In the coming months he will be involved with the release of two more albums recorded with the legendary jazz guitarist Larry Coryell. Later in the year Kevin will be releasing his fourth studio recording with the Ubuntu Music Group in London, featuring saxophonist Seamus Blake & Award winning U.S. pianist Bill Carrothers. He is also a respected educator in the jazz world, and will also be representing the Newpark Academy of Music at jazzahead! as it has plans to launch a new course of study in jazz music in 2022.

Rynx Laneran has performed at venues across Dublin including Anseo, The International Bar and The Jazz Co-op at the Workman’s Bar with a residency at La Pausa Caffe in 2019. The ensemble released the follow up to their debut EP (Morphology) on the 21st of February 2021. The latest EP "Morphology Pt.2" features three original tracks and is available across all major music streaming platforms. Each track of Rynx Laneran’s latest release illustrates a significant stage in Evin O’Brien’s development and taste as a musician, composer and music fan. Subtle references re-contextualized within original compositions, explored in-depth through the process of collaborative improvisation. This EP is a reflection on how this ensemble has matured over the course of a year of performing together. Rynx Laneran produce three distinctive “scenes” over the course of this EP, moments of intense groove and interplay ensue.

A prolific artist, Adam Nolan has released a large number of albums recently based on particular concepts with a very interesting process. One was a 5 day water fast before recording. Others based on meditation and altered states of consciousness. Recently the music has become more on the ground and has an urban yet spiritual sound that is cracking through the scene like no other. Boldness, risk and a sense of pure adventure is what his music is all about. In each album, he challenges himself to be completely absorbed by the mindset and approach to create the music. Everything is done in 1 take. No retakes. Completely improvised. This is Irish Jazz is one of his most recent albums along with ‘The Great Conjunction’ feat. Dave Redmond and Tom Corcoran. "It Is What It Is" was the album that kicked off the beginning of international interest and love for the music, featuring Graham Heaney. His upcoming album features Dominic Mullan and Derek Whyte and is titled "Prim and Primal".

Dubliner Sue Rynhart has been crafting her unique and captivating blend of neo-folksy, jazz-laden, classically-inspired original music to international critical acclaim, stemming from her groundbreaking work as part of Dylan Rynhart’s 10-piece Fuzzy Logic Ensemble. Her two albums ‘Signals’, and ‘Crossings’, at once soulful and severe, are a fine fusion of the avant-garde and the emotive. Live highlights of her career include performing at the NCH as a support act for the late Tomasz Stanko, singing at most of the Jazz Festivals in Ireland, the Liverpool Tall Ships Festival aboard a tall ship, EFG London Jazz Festival and at leading clubs in the UK such as NQ Jazz in Manchester and the Vortex in London. She has recently collaborated with UK musicians Huw Warren, Rob Luft and Corrie Dick.

Katharine Timoney is a jazz vocalist and songwriter from Northern Ireland. She is the recent winner of the BBC NI Platform Award in the Jazz Category sponsored by The Arts Council of Northern Ireland. As part of the award, she made her recent TV debut appearance on BBC Series ‘Sounds New’ and performed her self-penned songs with The Ulster Orchestra at a special BBC concert in The Ulster Hall, Belfast in May 2019. Katharine released her debut album ‘Man of Mine’ in 2016 which was included in ‘Best New Releases of 2016’ by BBC Radio Ulster’s presenter Linley Hamilton. The eight-track album consists of originals and re-interpreted jazz standards combining components of traditional vocal jazz with contemporary melodies. She regularly performs at jazz festivals, most notably Cork Guinness Jazz Festival and Sligo Jazz Project. Katharine has recently recorded her next record with producer Ben Castle due for release in 2021.

John Daly is the director of the Limerick Jazz Festival. Limerick Jazz has been promoting music in the mid-west of Ireland for over 35 years. They run spring and autumn seasons which feature the best of live Irish and international contemporary Jazz. The last five years have seen regular promotions of local artists by organizations such as Speakeasy Jazz, concert appearances by Wayne Shorter; Bobby McFerrin; and Bela Fleck and visits from Jazz greats like Chris Potterl; Thomasz Stanko; John Abercrombie; Manu Katche; Guy Barker; and Soweto Kinch.

Embassy Gutters is a project by Irish based musician/producer Martin Clancy (The Witness Protection Programme, In Tua Nua, Valleraphon) that explores jazz, electronic music and spoken word. This project was born while he was the musician in residence for the Seaport Festival in New York, where Martin achieved a series of Top 40 hits on the US Billboard charts in 2010-11. The project featured music created in Ableton Live (Martin is a Ableton Certi ed Training with strong contacts in Germany) alongside poems by Charles Bukowski. It was curated by Stephen Dima (producer of the Seaport Festival) and had a total of 3 songs ready for release in 2010 that ultimately were never released. Martin then went on to work with Irish techno melodic group, Valleraphon and completed his PhD in music, AI and ethics with Trinity University. Upon listening to Valleraphon's latest release "Pathos" (which included a spoken word element) on UK Billboard, Ireland based Latin American jazz musician Leo Hofnug became interested in Martin's work and began collaborating with him towards the release of the original Embassy Gutters songs as well as the creation of new material incorporating elements of latin jazz and improvisation with spoken word.

ZASKA serves up a feel-good blend of modern funk, neo-soul, and jazz. Max Zaska is the guitar-wielding songwriter at the helm of this supergroup of talent with a rotating roster of session players and rising stars from across genres in the Irish music scene. ZASKA's first album received universally stellar reviews. The group will be releasing their 2nd album in Fall 2021. The band has played headliners and festivals throughout Ireland and played London in October 2019.

Originally from the Deep South in the United States, Dana Masters grew up with sound of soul, rhythm and blues and gospel music all around her. Recently, she has been touring as a featured vocalists in the Van Morrison band for 6 years. She has released two solo EP's of original work and is currently recording her 3rd project with Irish producer/composer Cian Boylan. She has performed on two recent projects with the RTÈ Concert Orchestra and the Ulster Orchestra for broadcast. She was also featured on BBC's Proms In The Park in 2016, and was a guest vocalist for the Papal visit In Ireland in 2018

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