What is Gypsy Jazz?
The Hot Club of Buffalo plays a brand of jazz known as Gypsy Swing. It’s also called Gypsy Jazz. The style was created in the 1930’s by the legendary 2-fingered guitarist, Django Reinhardt. Gypsy Jazz blends American big band swing with exotic European Gypsy sounds.
The music is performed entirely on acoustic instruments. The rhythm guitar takes the place of a drum set. The guitars, strings, and even the picks are specially chosen to get that unique gypsy sound!
MEET THE BAND
Who is The Hot Club of Buffalo?
The Hot Club of Buffalo is a 4-piece gypsy jazz band from…Buffalo, NY! The group adds some modern twists to traditional gypsy swing. Riffs from Bach, Jimi Hendrix and Steely Dan are as common as quotes from gypsy legend Django Reinhardt. And dance-friendly world music, like Bossa Nova, Choro and Rhumba are a part of every show. So is improvisation. You never know what’s going to happen next!
Why that name?
The Hot Club of Buffalo takes its name from a group of jazz enthusiasts in 1920’s France. The group gathered often to listen to, and talk about, American jazz music. Among their favorite ‘Hot Jazz’ artists were Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington. In keeping with the spirit of the music, they named themselves ‘The Hot Club of France.
The group later organized concerts, which featured Django Reinhardt & Stephane Grappelli. The two up and coming jazz stars named their new band, ‘The Quintet of The Hot Club of France.’ Since then, jazz bands with the words “The Hot Club of…” followed by the name of a city, have become popular throughout the world. It honors the gypsy jazz masters. And it’s also a tribute to the ‘home’ city of the band that carries on the tradition.
After many years in the rock scene, a chance encounter compelled Dean to unplug and study classical guitar. It was through that study that a love of Jazz & World Music began. In 2005 Dean formed the group Djambossa, playing a blend of Bossa Nova, Flamenco, and Gypsy Jazz. His love & dedication to these styles is apparent in each of his performances, whether with Djambossa or The Hot Club of Buffalo. When Dean is not busy playing guitar he is busy wishing that he was playing guitar
Frequent Special Guest
Brian Bauer (Dr. Jazz)
Sax and Clarinet
Brian Bauer (Dr. Jazz) is a frequent guest performer on saxophone & clarinet. Brian utilizes glissando, slap-tongue and various "animal" sounds. These were big hits in the Vaudeville era, but are rarely heard today. He has performed with Bonnie Raitt, Leon Redbone, John Hammond and many other greats. Dr. Jazz will be appearing at The White House this summer for a special concert for President and Mrs. Hoover.
Kevin O’Brien has performed and recorded on upright bass in almost every musical style, spanning classical, jazz, rock, bluegrass and world music. He has toured nationally and internationally with groups including Babik, Big Wheelie & the Hubcaps, Dempsey Station and The Jazzabels. His song “Chipotle” on Babik’s ‘American Gypsy’ album received airplay on radio stations throughout America. Kevin also owns and operates The String Brothers, a booking agency that provides jazz and classical musicians for events in Western New York.
E.J. Koeppel has enjoyed a prolific career as a performer and educator, winning countless awards and scholarships. In 1981 he joined an acoustic jazz outfit called The Norris Quartet. This proved to be the catalyst for his deep love of jazz violin. Soon after, he had the good fortune to meet one of his violin heroes, Stephane Grappelli. Since then, E.J. has toured with Liza Minnelli & Dudley Moore and recorded with Jeffrey Arthur. E.J. is currently one of the most sought-after musicians in the Buffalo area for both jazz and classical music. He is also the instrumental music teacher in the Kenmore- Town of Tonawanda School district.
Joshua Assad has been singing & playing music as long as he can remember. As a founding member of the Gypsy Jazz band Babik, Joshua found a deep passion for swing music and early era jazz. He helped create and perform programming which won Babik 7 Buffalo music awards, performances with symphony orchestras (including The BPO), and garnered the group national recognition on the radio charts as well as extensive touring. He loves to bring a light-hearted, entertaining and carefree spirit to audiences everywhere.