Re: [RedHotJazz] Small combo "hot" swing bands!
----- Original Message -----
From: "David Brown" <johnhaleysims@...>
Sent: Monday, September 10, 2007 10:55 AM
Subject: RE: [RedHotJazz] Small combo "hot" swing bands!
> The term 'Swing' is usually reserved for music of the 'Swing Era', not
> possible to define exactly but certainly post 1930.
> 'Hot' is usually used in discussion of music of the 20s, although can be
> used descriptively outside that period, as can 'Swing' outside the 30s.
> So unique was it, that the music of Django defies normal categorisation
> with its classical and European influences and the exclusive use of string
> instruments, it is difficult to consider 'hot'. However, it is also very
> from archetypical 'swing', offering a unique rhythmic momentum nearer
> to chug.
> But, don't get me wrong, Django was an authentic, original and
> unclassifiable genius.
My brother often insists that there was no jazz tradition among the Gypsy
community prior to Django, and the still vivid style which did become
traditional owes mostly everything to him. He always had an incredible
number of followers and my limited experience in my brother's group proved
that even a very "average" combo playing Django's music was sure to appeal
to popular audience. There has been a recent "revival" of the so-called
Gypsy Swing, with what I would call great technicians who are not *all* good
musicians IMO, however fast and loud they can play; but also a number of
"greats", and very clever insertion of the style into their music by good
and comparatevely young French singers. Besides large festivals like Samois,
many obscure groups have always kept playing that music in small cafés like,
for instance, the one hidden in the midlle of the StOuen/Clignancourt flea
market touching the north of Paris. I do not like exaggerated and
enthusiastic statements, but in this case I think it is not an exaggeration
to say that Django's music is still alive here ;-)
- You will have to tell the problems --- I am confused as you find them
Seminal in their iconoclasm, revealing the flaws in both.
They are musical biographies, putting the music first, indulging in personal
detail to illustrate the music.
Bergreen I once picked up but replaced on the bookshop shelf after half a
page. He is a musically ignorant professional biographer.
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