New jazz club to attract top talent to Braemar

The Tenement Jazz Band will kick off a series of concerts in styleThe Tenement Jazz Band will kick off a series of concerts in style
The Tenement Jazz Band will kick off a series of concerts in style
Thriving Deeside arts venue, St Margaret’s Braemar, has launched a new Jazz Club as part of its 2024 event programme.

The former church turned exhibition and performance venue is set to welcome some of Scotland’s top jazz talent over the coming months, with a varied programme to suit aficionados and occasional jazz enthusiasts alike.

Kicking off a series of concerts ahead in 2024 is the Tenement Jazz Band — an ensemble of some of Edinburgh’s top jazz players, brought together through their shared love of traditional New Orleans styles.

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Tenement Jazz aim to capture the raw energy and excitement of the earliest jazz recordings, with most of their repertoire composed before 1930.

They have performed extensively throughout the UK and Europe and were shortlisted in the Best Band category at the Scottish Jazz Awards and will perform in Braemar on Saturday, May 18.

St Margaret’s Jazz Club returns with an extra special event this July, as award-winning violinist, vocalist and BBC broadcaster Seonaid Aitken pays tribute to two of her biggest jazz heroes.

The first half of the concert will see Aitken perform a tribute to the great Stephane Grappelli, alongside top jazz guitarist Conor Smith.

The pair will celebrate Grappelli’s career with swingin’ tunes from his solo repertoire - eg. ‘Sweet Georgia Brown’ and ‘Ol’ Man River’ - including material from his Quintette du Hot Club de France and legendary duets with Classical virtuoso Yehudi Menuhin.

In the second half of the concert Seonaid pays homage to her favourite jazz vocalist - the ‘First Lady of Song’ - Ella Fitzgerald.

Seonaid will explore some of Ella’s iconic recordings from her Songbook series and hit singles for Decca Records.

Following her highly acclaimed Ella Fitzgerald big band show in 2017, celebrating the centenary of the great jazz legend, Seonaid was awarded ‘Best Vocalist’ twice at the Scottish Jazz Awards and continues to celebrate one of the best singers in the history of jazz.

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Venue Manager Lyndsey Boden said: “We’re so excited to be expanding our musical offering for 2024 with a brand new St Margaret’s Jazz Club.

“We’ve had some great jazz talent grace the St Margaret’s stage in recent years, including saxophonist Tommy Smith, big band Fat-Suit and Mercury Prize shortlisted pianist and composer Fergus McCreadie.

“We know that our ever-growing and regular audience has loved these gigs and have been crying out for more — so we’re delighted to start out Jazz Club programme with the Tenement Jazz Band this May and Seonaid Aitken and Conor Smith in July.

“St Margaret’s is a glorious venue for live music and we’re can’t wait to welcome these fabulous musicians to Braemar in the coming weeks.”

Tickets for both concerts are on sale now at

Prices starting at £9 for kids and £14.50 for ‘Friends of St Margaret’s’.

St Margaret’s Trust delivers an exciting and varied programme of events throughout the year, including concerts, exhibitions, talks, tours, farmers’ markets and workshops.

However, St Margaret’s remains on the Buildings at Risk register and requires urgent funding to repair, restore and enhance the building for continued use.

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