Re: [Harp-L] Gypsy Jazz Harmonica

Why is it 'Gypsy' jazz? Sounds like string jazz to me, like Lang and
Venuti were doing. I don't recall anything like ethnic Gypsy music in
any of Django's recordings.
Anyhow, call it what you like I suppose; great stuff.

>>> David Naiditch <davidnaiditch@xxxxxxxxxxx> 11/12/2011 10:52 >>>
In the 1930s, guitar virtuoso Django Reinhart, together with violinist
Stephane Grappelli, introduced the world to Gypsy jazz.  Gypsy jazz is
typically acoustic music featuring the guitar, but often includes the
violin, bass, and sometimes accordion.  (Gypsy jazz guitars have a
distinctive look, as you will soon discover if you watch the referenced
YouTube videos.)  Gypsy jazz harmonica is rare, but Django recorded four
tunes with the chromatic virtuoso, Larry Adler: 

Django also occasionally played with jazz harmonica player Max

There is renewed interest in Gypsy jazz, and Iâve played the chromatic
harmonica at numerous Gypsy jazz festivals and jams.  I think the
harmonica really sounds good in this musical genre.  Iâll soon be
announcing my new Gypsy jazz CD, featuring my chromatic playing, along
with guitar virtuoso Gonzalo Bergara, 5-string banjo whiz Pat Cloud,
rhythm guitarist Jeffrey Radaich, and bassist Brian Netzley. 

Although there are few harmonica players specializing in Gypsy jazz,
many have recorded various Django tunes or have sat in with Gypsy jazz
bands.  Some of these players, together with YouTube links, are listed
below.  If you think Iâve missed important players of this genre, please
let me know.

In 2001, Peter Schmutter played on the âSwing Newsâ CD with the Gypsy
jazz guitarist, Joscho Stephan.  You can hear Schmutter play on two
songs from this CD, Black Orpheus and Body and Soul: 

Jacob Venndt (who also plays bass, melodica, and sings) is a member of
The Dixieland Gipsyband: 

In âBastards of Belleville,â Bill Barrett plays Djangoâs Gyspy jazz
classic, Swing Gitane. 

The great jazz harmonica player, Hermine Deurloo, plays Djangoâs Douce
Ambiance and Anouman: 

Finn Poulsen is one of the few harmonica players specializing in Gypsy
jazz.  Here are a few of his videos: 

Doug Tanner of the Gyspy Wranglers plays Djangoâs Nuages: 

Laurent Maur Suzuki plays really nice harmonica: 

Babak Safarnezhad does a fine job imitating Larry Adlerâs Gypsy jazz: 

Although most harmonica players playing Gypsy jazz use a chromatic,
there are some fine diatonic players.  Mariano Massolo, for instance,
uses a diatonic on Minor Swing and JÌATENDRAI:! 

On his âTime Capsulesâ CD, Howard Levy plays an amazing version of
Djangoâs Nuages, as well as Gypsy jazz versions of Bei Mir Sist Du
Schoen and Oh, Lady Be Good. 

Sandy Weltman plays a great diatonic on Douce Ambiance and Blue Drag: 

Finally, on their âBack to Backâ CD, Brendan Power (chromatic) & PT
Gazell (half-valved diatonic) do really nice versions of Swing 42 and
Honeysuckle Rose 

Hope you enjoy playing and hearing Gypsy jazz harmonica as much as I

David Naiditch

This archive was generated by a fusion of Pipermail 0.09 (Mailman edition) and MHonArc 2.6.8.