Evan Christopher’s Django à la Créole spices up the hot Gypsy swing pioneered by Django Reinhardt with the cool Creole rhythms of New Orleans and beyond. The American clarinetist and Europe-based rhythm section consisting of Sebastien Girardot (FR) on double bass, with Don Vappie (New Orleans) and Dave Kelbie (UK) on guitars. The quartet artfully contrasts virtuosity with an acoustic, intimate approach that unfailingly balances a reverence for tradition while still being up-to-the minute and in-the moment.
The primary inspiration for this unique fusion of New Orleans clarinet with “Jazz Manouche” was Reinhardt’s historic recording session in 1939 with Duke Ellington sidemen Rex Stewart and Creole clarinetist Barney Bigard. Djangologists may recognize a resemblance to the incarnation of “Quintet of the Hot Club of France” that featured clarinetist Hubert Rostaing, yet Django à la Créole is much more than a repertory ensemble. Christopher and his band thoughtfully re-invent classic material by infusing their arrangements with musical idioms from New Orleans as well as Brazil, Cuba and the Caribbean. The results are personal and often clever tributes to their jazz heroes.
The mastery of rhythm guitarist, Dave Kelbie is known well by anyone who follows contemporary exponents of Gypsy jazz such as Tcha Limberger or Fapy Lafertin. On the other hand, the pedigree of bassist Sebastien Girardot is more recognized pertinent to aficionados of traditional jazz. For the solo guitar chair, the band recently welcomed New Orleans native, Don Vappie. Besides being a highly skilled guitarist, Vappie contributes warm vocal renderings of authentic Creole Jazz songs, classics from the early days of New Orleans, as well as jaw-dropping banjo features.
01-10-2015 Borough Theatre
02-10-2015 Wiltshire music centre
03-10-2015 Arena Theatre
04-10-2015 The 1st Django Reinhardt festival of Shrewsbury
06-10-2015 The Sage
07-10-2015 Royal Northern College of Music
08-10-2015 Yellow Arch studios
09-10-2015 Marsden jazz festival
10-10-2015 Sunside Sunset
11-10-2015 Sunside Sunset
13-10-2015 Crooked Billet
14-10-2015 Concorde Club
16-10-2015 Frant Parish Church, Frant UK
17-10-2015 The Theatre Chipping Norton
18-10-2015 Pizza Express Jazz Club