Imelda May to headline Jazz festival in April

Imelda May, this year's festival headliner.
Imelda May, this year's festival headliner.

The 2017 headline act for the 16th City of Derry Jazz and Big Band Festival has said she cannot wait to make her return to the city and celebrate her brand new sound when she performs at The Millennium Forum on Sunday, April 30.

The extremely talented Irish musician, producer and singer/songwriter Imelda May this year takes the headline spot as she launches her new music, which many will have seen when she performed her lead track Black Tears at the Jools Holland ‘Hootenanny’ special over New Year.

May will feature as the headline act at the five day festival from April 27 until May 1. Sponsored by Guinness, the City of Derry Jazz and Big Band Festival is an annual celebration of jazz and big bands featuring artists from all over the world. Organised by Derry City and Strabane District Council, the festival attracts upwards of 40,000 revellers to the city each year, who will enjoy up to 200 live music acts at over 70 venues during the Bank Holiday weekend.

As she prepares to bring her new album (described as a ‘new direction for May’) to the festival in late April, Imelda, when asked what her audience should expect, said: “This is me. I always loved the Fifties rockabilly style but there was a point where I felt I was almost dressing up as Imelda May. It was as if I was getting into character for a gig. And I didn’t want to do that anymore. Life changed.

“I love the albums I made before. They were honest to the person I was. But that was then and this is now.

“I had a great time in city the last time I performed in Derry. I’m delighted to be asked to return and very pleased to be selected as the headliner for the festival.”

Tickets for Imelda May’s show will be available from Friday 10th February at the City of Derry Jazz and Big Band Festival website at or at the Millennium forum Box Office on 028 7126 4455. Tickets will be priced from £27.50 - £35.00. Early Bird specials are available to those booking before the end of February and pre-sale tickets will be available to Priority Club members on Thursday, February 9.