John Jorgenson is one of the pioneers of the American gypsy jazz movement. Because of his international reputation as a gypsy jazz player, John was twice asked to recreate Django Reinhardt's music for feature films, Gattica and Head in The Clouds. The latter, released in early 2005 and starring Charlize Theron and Penelope Cruz, features John on camera as Django Reinhardt, complete with burned hand and gypsy moustache. His articles and lessons on gypsy jazz have appeared in prominent guitar magazines and he has given master classes around the country, and he has performed with some of the most respected European proponents of this style,
Extraordinarily gifted, Jorgenson's pedigree is second to none. In the mid-80s along with ex-Byrd Chris Hillman he co-founded The Desert Rose Band. While they clocked up five US number one singles Jorgenson won the Academy of Country Music's ‘Guitarist Of The Year' three consecutive times before forming the mightily acclaimed, much garlanded Hellecasters after which he was invited to play guitar for Elton John. Initially contracted for an eighteen month world tour the engagement lasted for six years. And – if all this wasn't enough - along the way Jorgenson has played with Barbara Streisand, Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, Roy Orbison and Benny Goodman to mention but a few.
At a John Jorgenson Quintet performance, audiences are amazed by John's dazzling guitar work as well as his mastery as a clarinet player and vocalist. Whether playing his own accessible compositions or classic standards, John and his band make music that is equally romantic and ecstatic, played with virtuosity and soul. Info on the band members can be found at the bottom of this linked page.
Tickets for the John Jorgenson Quintet on Sunday, June 10th at the Iron Horse in Northampton are $17.50 at Northampton Box Office, 76 Main Street, 413-586-8686 and online at IHEG.com
More than seven decades after the innovations of the Quintette du Hot Club de France, featuring guitar virtuoso Django Reinhardt, combos called Hot Clubs carry on the gypsy jazz sound around the globe-in Tokyo, San Francisco, Seattle, Sweden, Norway, Austria, and many other locales. None, however, offers a fresher take on the tradition than does the Hot Club of Detroit, led by fast-fingered Reinhardt disciple Evan Perri. "We kinda use the gypsy jazz thing as a springboard for all these wonderful ideas we have in our heads that we've grown up with here in Detroit," Perri explains. "In the future, I'd even like to incorporate some Motown stuff into this type of music."
Django In June
While not offically connected to the annual Django in June festival in Northampton from June 12th -17th, the Sunday, June 10th John Jorgenson Quintet show at the Iron Horse is booked to coincide with the celebration and we whole heartedly encourage you to take advantage of this wonderful series of events produced by one the Valley's most respected guitarists and guitar teachers, Andrew Lawrence, on the Smith College Campus. More info at this link. "Django in June is New England's premier occasion to celebrate, study and just plain enjoy the musical tradition unwittingly launched some 80 years ago by the great French Gypsy guitarist Django Reinhardt and his best known musical sidekick, violinist Stephane Grappelli. That tradition is now known by many names: Gypsy jazz, hot (or Hot Club) jazz, Gypsy swing... Whatever you call it, it offers one of the most ebullient, accessible and unique jazz styles on the planet."