Nanstein Castle sets stage for jazz festival

The Unnerhaus Culture Club, a non-profit organization, sponsors its 12th Blues, Jazz and Rock Music Festival July 24 to 26 at Nanstein Castle in Landstuhl.

The event features traditional dixieland, big band and gypsy jazz, blues and classic rock music.

“Come and feel the fantastic atmosphere at the inner court of the castle,” said Willi Ningelgen, member of the Unnerhaus Culture Club.

The club expects visitors from the KMC and surrounding communities from all over Germany and Southwest Europe, just like in recent years.

“This interesting event brings people and cultures together with good music, talks, local food specialties and all kinds of beverages,” Mr. Ningelgen said. “Our jazz festival is strongly supported by the county commissioner, the mayor of Landstuhl and senior commanders of the KMC.”

The festival kicks off at 8 p.m. July 24 and finishes around midnight. The first top act are the Uptown Shufflers with front man and vocalist Smitty, presenting a mixture of Chicago style blues, New Orleans groove and Gospel feeling. Smitty will be joined by Gerhard Lang (acoustic and electric guitar), Georg Dusemond (drums), a former student of the Percussion Institute of Technology in Los Angeles, Markus Lauer (piano and Hammond B3) and Blues lady (vocalist) Corinna Fickert.

The second top act are the Birmingham Blues with English piano star Steve “Big Man” Clayton, triple winner of the British Blues Award and one of the best European blues-boogie vocalists. He will be joined by Rocky Knauer (bass), a student of the Joe Haider Jazz College in Munich, and Bernard Flegar (drums), a student of Barret Deems, who was a previous member of the famous Louis Armstrong “All Stars.”

 Around midnight, the event continues later in the former Castle Gun Tower with swinging blues and soul presented by Bernhard Smith (vocals), Jürgen Molitor (piano) and Corinna Fickert (vocalist).  

Festival performances continue at 5 p.m. July 25. The first act is the New Orleans Preachers from France with their famous Marching Formation. The second band is Tibor Barkoczy (piano) and Melinda Stoika (vocals) from Austria.

“Highlight of the evening is Charly Antolini from Switzerland, known as the world famous master of drums, and his excellent band,” Mr. Ninglegen said.

On July 26, the Old Jazz Band Jeff Green’s Chicago Stompers East start at 11 a.m. performing classical old jazz.

“After that the New Orleans Preachers say good-bye with an unforgettable marching performance,” Mr. Ningelgen said. “They are part of the castle jazz festival; they only missed three festivals out of 11.”

Then the Swingtêtes, a German-French band presents gypsy music by Django Reinhardt. The jazz festival closes with boogie woogie and rock ’n’ roll sound by Harald Krüger and his band Low Budget playing the highlights of the 1950s from Chuck Berry, Jerry Lee Lewis, The King Elvis Presley and Buddy Holly.

Tickets are available at the castle entrance. Cheaper advance tickets are sold at the healthy food store Hackler in Landstuhl, 06371-71549, the bookstore Boehm, 06371-2742 or via the Web page Advance ticket prices for single days range from €18 (Friday) to €22 (Saturday) and €9 (Sunday). An advance ticket for all three days is €42. Children under 12 years are admitted free.

Parking is in easy walking distance to the castle.

(Courtesy of Unnerhaus Culture Club)