Having been here in the city since 2008, it has been a fascinating to watch the journey of the city’s jazz scene, which has developed and grown into this crazy melting pot of bands and musicians. Over the past 3 years, it has grown at a pace that I have never experienced before, and it has been mind blowing to watch. We are at a point now where things are really bubbling, about to pop, with some local bands having been signed. There is a new Glaswegian jazz label set to launch this year which focuses on the young people’s jazz coming from Glasgow and Scotland. Sometimes, it feels like each day that passes, there are two or three exciting new projects forming. I wonder where this is all going to go in the future and where we will be in another 5, 10 or 20 years time.
WW Glasgow, which has been running for the past three years, has been a place to showcase all of these amazing fresh bands, a platform for them all to perform in live sessions and showcase their new music. The show has been so well received by audiences outside of London, which makes me very hopeful. However, a lot of the festivals, press, and cultural programmers seem to overlook Glasgow and its jazz scene.
There are many logistical reasons for this, a big one being that we are so far from London. This makes it harder for London venues to book less-established bands without financial risk. However, this creates a vicious cycle, as artists need to be given opportunities in order to let them break through and thrive. How is a city supposed to be able to raise its voice if there are frustratingly limited amounts of opportunities available?