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Lamarotte Brass Band at the The 42 nd Guinness Cork Jazz Festival. For more on this year’s exciting line-up or to purchase tickets, see Picture: Clare Keogh



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Thursday, 30th Sept: Today, Guinness has announced that tickets are now on sale for the Guinness Cork Jazz Festival, Ireland’s first big festival in over 18 months. This October Bank Holiday Weekend, 22 – 25th Guinness Cork Jazz festival is back in Cork City. Now in its 43rd year, excitement is building as music fans will get that long-anticipated thrill of hearing live music again.

Experience the buzz of performers coming on stage again, the hush through the pub as they then start to play, before the crowd erupts; with headliner acts including the uniquely soulful Matthew Halsall, a composer, trumpeter, producer, DJ, and founder of Gondwana Records, who will perform with a hand-picked ensemble featuring some of Manchester’s finest young musicians. The hugely popular Hypnotic Brass Ensemble, made up of seven brothers from the south side of Chicago, are back following sell-out performances in 2018. Closing the festival on Monday evening, Yasiin Bey Big Band FKA Mos Def will perform with a live band for the first time in Ireland and is sure to be one of the biggest shows of this year’s festival.

Other must-see performances over the weekend includeCork’s much-loved singer-songwriter Mick Flannery on stage with the critically acclaimed Susan O’Neill, Mack Fleetwood bringing you all the best hits of Fleetwood Mac, DJ Jenny Greene, King Kong Company and Kit Downes with his highly anticipated album Dreamlife of Debris live in concert.

Speaking about this year’s festival, Rory Sheridan, Head of Partnerships, Diageo Ireland said: “Ireland is brimming with some of the most talented and creative musicians, artists and performers, but during the last 18 months they’ve had no stage, no pubs, no venues or stadiums. We’ve all missed the hum of the crowd and the beat of the drum, so we are delighted to welcome back The Guinness Cork Jazz Festival, providing a platform for musicians to perform and welcoming thousands of people to Cork to enjoy the festival atmosphere that we have all been looking forward to returning”.

Fiona Collins, Chairperson of the Cork Jazz Festival Committee commented: “One of the highlights for many will be the Fringe Festival which will see some of finest brass bands, New York Brass and Hyde Park returning, as well as more familiar local bands such as Rebel Brass bringing music to the streets of Cork.” Collins continued; “The festival committee is delighted to work in partnership with Diageo Ireland, Cork City Council, Cork Chamber of Commerce, Cork Business Association and businesses all over the city to bring jazz back to the streets of Cork. It promises to be a fantastic weekend, with an ever-developing programme, and it’s a fantastic opportunity to bring the vibrancy of the festival back to the City of Cork’. 

Other festival highlights include:

  • Special live debut performance of ChoiceCut’s recording project Mas Exodus by ChoiceCut’s Mark Murphy and musical director Max Zaska, supported by the Department of Culture & Tourism, and featuring some of Ireland’s most talented musicians.
  • Cork’s two inimitable and formidable jazz musicians, Paul Dunlea (Trombone) and Cormac McCarthy (Piano) who are joining forces in a set to include original Jazz compositions and also Xenia Pestova Bennett (piano) and Ed Bennett (live electronics) who will perform a radical reinterpretation of Bach’s famous Goldberg Variations.
  • Jazz Festival Club at the Metropole Hotel will host Fans of Swing, Funk, Groove, Blues and Dixieland for an exciting mix of Irish and international acts on several stages throughout the hotel.
  • The Jazz Music Trail sees the city come alive with the sights and sounds of this music trail that spans over 60 Cork venues. With music to suit every appetite, you’ll discover everything from ska to swing, jazz to brass as the trail leads you to every corner of the city.

To purchase tickets to the Guinness Cork Jazz Festival 2021 log onto;


Established in 1978, the festival has stood the test of time and is now in its 43rd year. The Guinness Cork Jazz Festival has gone from strength to strength over the decades, bringing a world class offering to the banks of the Lee which over the years has included a stellar constellation of Jazz legends from Ella Fitzgerald, Herbie Hancock, Dave Brubeck, BB King and Dizzy Gillespie, to Ronnie Scott, George Melly, Cleo Laine, and Sonny Rollins. 

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