I would like to take the opportunity to thank all the partners and volunteers involved in organising such a wonderful event, and especially to the Presiding Officer for graciously hosting us in this magnificent chamber.This summit provides a brilliant opportunity for ministers, artists, practitioners – and for this year’s summit notably young practitioners to come from across the globe to discuss, challenge and formulate cultural strategies.Culture has the power to bring people, places and nations together and enrich the lives of all citizens. So I applaud everyone who has made the effort to come to Edinburgh this year and engage in such lively discussions.Everyone here today knows that culture make our lives better. And we also know that the opportunity to be an awed audience member or a participant of the arts should be open to everyone.Listening to the speeches this morning highlighted the positive role that culture can have on our lives.Whether it’s the research that Dr Habibi presented on the power of music on brain development or the work that Professor Bloem showed highlighting the impact of art on Parkinson’s whilst amazing us with evidence that the choice to become an artists reduces the likelihood to contract Parkinson’s! And what a privilege to see such a wonderful performance from Mr Herman.I think we can all agree that we as policy makers in this room we must continue to explore the potential use of our cultural assets in bettering the lives of people in our countries and across the globe. And I think we can all agree that we have heard some powerful evidence that we can take back to our own countries and use as we develop future policy.It’s an exciting time for those who advocate for the role of arts in health. My former DCMS colleague, in his new role as Secretary of State for Health, Matt Hancock recently announced £4.5million for new or existing social prescribing projects in England. There is a great opportunity here for cultural organisations and arts practitioners to further demonstrate how their work can ensure a healthy society.Social and cultural relationships are key to good health and I think anyone here today who has sung in a choir, volunteered at a museum, or taken part in any other of the number of ways we give our time to the arts can attest that the relationships forged can be truly meaningful and at times, life-changing.If we can work together to demonstrate to others the true impact of arts and culture, society will become healthier and happier.So to conclude, I hope everyone here has had the opportunity to engage in positive, and sometimes challenging discussions and can take back thoughts, ideas and best practices to help formulate future cultural policies.I know that we have. We, as the UK Government look forward to keeping these conversations going in the future with you all. I hope you all have had the opportunity to enjoy the festivals across Edinburgh during your time here. Thank you.
Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit have announced the release of a new album, The Nashville Sound, due out June 16 via Southeastern Records/Thirty Tigers. The highly anticipated upcoming release comes after their 2015 Something More Than Free, which won two Grammy Awards (Best Americana Album & Best American Roots Song, “24 Frames”) and two Americana Music Association Awards (Album of the Year & Song of The Year, “24 Frames”).The Nashville Sound was recorded at Nashville’s legendary RCA Studio A and produced by Grammy Award-winner Dave Cobb, who produced Something More Than Free and Isbell’s celebrated 2013 breakthrough album Southeastern. The Nashville Sound is the first official Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit album since 2011’s Here We Rest. The 400 Unit features Derry deBorja (keyboards), Chad Gamble (drums), Jimbo Hart (bass), Amanda Shires (fiddle) and Sadler Vaden (guitar). The group just announced a five-night stand at Nashville’s Ryman Auditorium October 10,11,13-15 to add to their extensive tour. See list of tour dates below.Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit 2017 US Summer Dates:June 17 – Asheville, NC – Thomas Wolfe Auditorium #June 18 – Raleigh, NC – North Carolina Museum of Art #June 19 – Philadelphia, PA – The Fillmore Philadelphia #June 22 – New York, NY – Beacon Theatre #June 23 – New York, NY – Beacon Theatre +June 24 – New York, NY – Beacon Theatre +June 26 – New Haven, CT – College Street Music Hall +June 27 – Boston, MA – Blue Hills Bank Pavilion +June 29 – Canandaigua, NY – Marvin Sands Performing Arts Center >June 30 – Columbia, MD – Merriweather Post Pavilion +July 1 – Cincinnati, OH – PNC Pavilion at Riverbend Music +July 2 – Huber Heights, OH – Rose Music Center at the Heights +July 5 – Papillion, NE – Sumtur Amphitheatre +July 7 – St. Paul, MN – The Palace Theatre +(Sold Out)July 11 – Sioux Falls, SD – The Washington Pavilion +July 12 – St. Louis, MO – Peabody Opera House +July 14 – Austin, TX – ACL Live at the Moody Theater +July 15 – Austin, TX – ACL Live at the Moody Theater #July 16 – Austin, TX – ACL Live at the Moody Theater #July 18 – Houston, TX – Revention Music Center #July 19 – Jackson, MS – Thalia Mara Hall #July 21 – Miami Beach, FL – The Fillmore *July 22 – St. Augustine, FL – St. Augustine Amphitheatre *July 23 – North Charleston, SC – North Charleston Performing Arts Center*September 7 – Morrison, CO – Red Rocks AmphitheatreOctober 10 – Nashville, TN – Ryman AuditoriumOctober 11 – Nashville, TN – Ryman AuditoriumOctober 13 – Nashville, TN – Ryman AuditoriumOctober 14 – Nashville, TN – Ryman AuditoriumOctober 15 – Nashville, TN – Ryman AuditoriumSupport: # Amanda Shires / + Mountain Goats / > Iron & Wine / * Strand of Oaks2017 European DatesOctober 25 – Manchester, UK – Albert HallOctober 26 – Glasgow, UK – O2 ABCOctober 27 – Dublin, Ireland – Olympia TheatreOctober 29 – Brighton, UK – Brighton DomeOctober 30 – London, UK – RoundhouseOctober 31 – Birmingham, UK – Symphony HallNovember 2 – Paris, France – Le Café de la DanseNovember 3 – Brussels, Belgium – Ancienne BelgiqueNovember 6 – Amsterdam, Netherlands – ParadisoNovember 7 – Hamburg, Germany – Uebel & GefährlichNovember 8 – Berlin, Germany – Columbia TheaterNovember 10 – Oslo, Norway – Sentrum SceneNovember 11 – Oslo, Norway – Sentrum SceneNovember 12 – Stockholm, Sweden – MünchenbryggerietNovember 14 – Copenhagen, Denmark – DR Concert HallTift Merritt supports all European dates. read more