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Festivals In The Park

Saxaphone being played at a gig

Every summer, our capital city comes alive with the sound of music. The Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival has been running since 1978 and is now one of the UK’s leading jazz festivals. There are more than 170 gigs and concerts taking place in various venues across Edinburgh. So, why not book a stay at the centrally located Parliament House Hotel and enjoy one of the city’s most vibrant festivals?

Make more of the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival. From just £145 per room per night, you can discover more of Edinburgh for less with our wonderful Edinburgh Sightseeing Tours.

History of the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues FestivalMusician playing piano

Crowds at a festivalThis Edinburgh music festival originally started as a traditional jazz event with several free sessions across the city’s pubs. Founded by Mike Hart, a guitarist, banjo-player and jazz enthusiast, the festival has significantly grown over the last three decades. Then, in the 1980s, the festival introduced several ticketed events in venues and added swing and mainstream jazz music. From here, it grew in both size and talent. It created the Princes Street parade and hosted free events in the Grassmarket and Princes Street Gardens. The festival was then sponsored by breweries so it could host international musicians and artists. In the mid-1990s, the event had established itself on the jazz scene. It focused on ticketed events and reduced the free pub sessions. All genres of jazz music had a stage to play on and the Edinburgh Jazz Festival Orchestra was established. Today, the event supports both Scottish and international jazz musicians and singers and encourages a link between them. Originally created to honour traditional jazz, the festival is now a celebration of musical excellence and attracts music lovers from all over the world.

City Venues, from Pubs to Theatres

Close up of musician playing saxophoneWhen the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival first began, it was the city’s pubs that hosted the talented musicians. The free sessions grew in popularity and it wasn’t long before larger venues were required to accommodate fans. So, over the years, it introduced new ticketed events at venues including jazz clubs and concert halls. Today, many well-known venues across Edinburgh host jazz performances and concerts throughout the summer. These include Festival Theatre, Rose Theatre, The Jazz Bar, and Spiegeltent on George Square. There are still plenty of free jazz performances to enjoy.  Mardi Gras Edinburgh is usually at the Grassmarket in the Old Town, and Edinburgh Festival Carnival takes place at Princes Street Gardens. For central Edinburgh Festival accommodation, check out our special offers at Parliament House.

Artists from near and far

Over the years, live jazz in Edinburgh has attracted music enthusiasts, artists and musicians from all over the globe. The festival’s reputation has spread and its stages have been graced by superstars. Regular artists have included Buddy Tate, Warren Vache and The Black Eagles Jazz Band. At past festivals, Edinburgh’s venues have hosted the likes of Clare Teal, Curtis Stigers and Jools Holland and his Rhythm and Blues Orchestra.

Whether you love your big band, swing, Mississippi blues or boogie-woogie, there’s something to suit everyone at the Edinburgh Jazz and Blues Festival. So, book a room at Parliament House, where you’re just a short stroll from the summer jazz festivities.

*Rates may vary depending on the time of your stay.

1st March 2019 – July 31st 2019: £175 midweek, £210 weekend per room per night
1st October 2019 – February 28th 2020: £145 midweek, £165 weekend per room per night
When booking, be sure to select a minimum two-night stay for this special rate. Please note, certain dates may be excluded (Marathon, Royal Highland Show, Christmas, New Year, Rugby dates, August & September which are Festival Months). Terms and Conditions apply, subject to availability.

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