Music from days of jazz when it began – Jelly Roll Morton, Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, and from the glory days of traditional jazz in the UK, to intimate gipsy jazz, toe-tapping swing, hot pianists, cool saxophones, clarinets, trumpets, trombones, banjos… Music that is uplifting, entertaining and inspiring, played by some of the finest musicians in the UK and abroad.
There will be space to dance in at least one venue, and dance tutors will run classes in the morning for beginners and intermediates.


The slightly more earthy cousin of jazz, music that grew up in the Mississippi Delta just upriver from New Orleans, the birthplace of jazz. Blues and jazz have always crossed paths and influenced each other: It is recognised that the best jazz is usually infused with the melancholic overtones of the blues, and likewise the apparently simple nature of blues songs are often decorated with improvisations and syncopations from the jazz vocabulary. Blues now encompasses a broad spectrum of music.

At Keswick Jazz and Blues Festival expect to hear songs from many fields, including traditional country style, boogie-woogie, gospel, classic Memphis style, New Orleans Rhythm and Blues…

2017 Programme

These were the artists that played this year’s event, many of whom will be returning for next year!

Entertainers for 2017 – a quick look

Following the many years of really enjoyable, varied and successful festivals the 2017 one will be everything it has been previously and more! The 26th festival will include many of the favourite bands and musicians that have become popular in Keswick over the years plus many new ones.

There’s a slightly more detailed overview down the page but for now here’s a few names to be going on with:

  • Keith Nichols – the legendary pianist and raconteur with over 50 years in the business of entertaining. Click for Website
  • Enrico Tomasso – winner of the best trumpet category of the British Jazz Awards two years running. Read more here.
  • Savannah Jazz Band – have appeared at every festival since it started, loved by all. Click for Website
  • Baby Jools and the Jazzaholics – run by the young drummer “Baby Jools”, they have become a firm favourite up and down the UK
  • Dorine de Wit – after appearing for many years with The Richard Bennett band she made a real impact in 2016 with her new band. Click for Website
  • Jeff Barnhart – Keswick’s favourite globe-trotting American pianist with a big personality and amazing mastery of the piano.
  • TJ Johnson – masterfully combines jazz, gospel and blues for a show that always takes his audience on a journey. Click for Website
  • Remi Harris – brilliant guitar player who recently appeared on the stage of the Albert Hall for a BBC Proms concert.
  • Black Cat Jazz. Old style New Orleans six piece – very popular. Click for Website
  • John Hallam with Amy Roberts and Craig Milverton. Click for Website
  • Baby Jools and the Jazzaholics – Top band with loads of energy.
  • Jeff Barnhart – an internationally renowned pianist, vocalist, arranger, bandleader, recording artist, composer, educator and entertainer. Click for Website
  • Paul Harrison, Kevin Grenfell, Phil Nice – from Denmark.  Popular musicians on the trad jazz circuit. Click for Paul Harrison Website or here for Kevin Greenfell
  • Jamie Brownfield – a widely respected jazz musician who started on the cornet aged 9 playing in the local brass band. Click for Website
  • Remi Harris – “incredible guitarist… I’m absolutely blown away by his talent…amazing” – Jamie Cullum. Click for Website
  • Reeds United – Always popular with Keswick audiences
  • Rob Heron and the teapad orchestra – winning friends and fans at each new show. Click for website.
  • John Burgess and his Ugly Bug Ragtime band – music from the Golden Age of Jazz. Click for website.
  • Lizy Exell and her Old Hat Jazz Band – continues the tradition of crafting music with a hot and swinging approach. Click for website.
  • Kevin Grenfell’s International Jazz Giants, with Paul Harrison – respected as both a trombonist and vocalist. Click for website.
  • Sean Moyses – Original, unique, quirky and engaging – “The Banjo Man”. Click for website.
  • Remi Harris – an exciting young guitarist from the UK. Click for website.
  • Joan Viskant – one of the rare breed of singers – a musician’s musician. Click for website.
  • Mat Walklate and Paulo Fuschi – all styles of blues from the 1950s onwards. Click for website.

Tom Kincaid

Tom’s influences range from Errol Garner and Oscar Peterson to Professor Longhair and Dr. John. He plays a diverse repertoire of mainstream swing & jazz standards, rock ’n’ roll & blues, traditional & New Orleans…

Enrico Tomasso

Enrico Tomasso, son of the fine jazz clarinettist Ernie Tomasso was exposed to the best of jazz from when he was born and started playing the trumpet at the age of five.

Jeff Barnhart

Jeff Barnhart is an internationally renowned pianist, vocalist, arranger, bandleader, recording artist, composer, educator and entertainer. Jeff is constantly appearing as a soloist, guest artist and pianist at jazz parties, festivals, clubs and cruises throughout the world.

TJ Johnson

TJ Johnson is widely considered to be one of the UK’s most charismatic highly revered jazz and blues singers. He is also a hot piano player, drummer and a respected bandleader. Click for website

Keith Nichols

Keith Nichols is considered to be one of the foremost authorities on Classic Jazz and Ragtime, specializing in all older jazz piano styles, including Scott Joplin, James P. Johnson, Fats Waller and Duke Ellington. Click for website

Black Cat Jazz

Formed in 2014, Black Cat Jazz is an exciting band combining some of the most accomplished jazz musicians from South Wales and the West Country who aim to perform music in an authentic New Orleans “Dance Hall” style. Click for website

Savannah Jazz Band

There is never a shortage of fun, excitement and raw good music whenever the Savannah Jazz Band takes the stage. The Savannah is one of the most popular UK bands around. With their talent for satisfying listeners and dancers alike they have built up a truly international reputation at major festivals in the UK and overseas. Click for website

Jake Leg jug Band

The Jake Leg Jug Band bring you the authentic sounds of 1920’s and 30’s America – Jazz, Blues, Gospel, Ragtime – and put their own twist on it. Songs of murder, betrayal, gambling, liquor and redemption. Click for website

Daniel Smith

Daniel Smith is described as the world’s greatest Dutch-Indonesian-Anglo-Scottish blues and boogie woogie piano player – and it’s probably true! He learnt boogie woogie from his Dutch-Indonesian uncle on regular visits to Holland, his mother’s family having emigrated there post-War from Jakarta, Indonesia, where his maternal grandfather had been a jazz piano player as well as an official in the Dutch colonial civil service. Click for website

Dale Storr

Voted in the top 5 UK Piano players (Blues Matters magazine) Dale’s ambition has always been to play the music of New Orleans, which can be anything from a classically influenced minuet, a latin rhumba, a back o’ town junker blues to a frenzied boogie woogie. Click for website

And so many more..