The Hot Club of Derbytown (www.hotclubofderbytown.com) re-creates the hot sounds of vintage jazz produced in Paris in the 1930s and 40s produced by the Quintet of the Hot Club Of France featuring legendary jazz guitarist Django Reinhardt and the virtuoso swinging violinist Stephane Grappelli. We threw in a gypsy swing number, some Western Swing and swingy blues to round it out.
Veteran performers Tom Cunningham (fiddle and vocals), 'Django' Jim Webb (guitar and vocals), and Blue 'Bleu' Murphy (bass and vocals) bring this sophisticated and energetic music to life once again, along with red-hot gypsy melodies and old-time blues and ragtime music. Throw in some Western Swing and you’ve got a swinging good party!
Jim Webb grew up in Washington, DC, and has played music professionally almost 40 years. He is a farmer, educator, ethnomusicologist who played with the Juggernaut Jug Band for several years. Jim was a KY Arts Council Artist in the Schools for 10 years, developing and implementing folk arts programs for the classroom. He played in the Falls City Ramblers and many other local bluegrass bands in Louisville. He has done research on British traditional music in Edinburgh, Scotland and played at the Philadelphia Folk Fest, Winfield, Silver Dollar City, Branson, MI, Sacromento Jazz Festival, National Press Club, Las Vegas Jazz Festival, KET Specials, Kent State Folk Festival, Kentucky FolkLife Fest., Somerset Master Musician Festival, Augusta Heritage Center Concert, Dollywood, Nashville Now. He has opened for Livingston Taylor, Norman Blake, Jonathan Edwards, Jimmy Martin, Frank Wakefield, Lester Flatt, John McEuen.
Tom Cunningham grew up in Pittsburgh, PA, but moved to Louisville 5 years ago. Tom is a multi-instrumentalist, singer-songwriter, performer and teacher, and creator of FiddleTales. He has been instrumental in founding, playing and arranging for many of Pittsburgh's best-known acoustic/bluegrass bands, including bluegrass bands The Flying Cunninghams, The Rank Strangers, swing band The Swing Shifters, and the contra dance band Band du jour. In Louisville, Tom has played with several top acoustic bands, including Flat Possum; The Hot Club of Derbytown; Blue Murphy and the Doghouse Serenaders; and The Next Exit. In addition, he has played (and acted) in many theatre productions, including: Woody Guthrie’s American Song, Grapes of Wrath, Christmas at Plum Creek, Quilters and Desire Under the Elms, at Pittsburgh’s City Theatre, Starlight Productions, Prime Stage Theatre and the University of Pittsburgh Theatre Department. The City Theatre production of Woody Guthrie’s American Song toured 4 states in 1995-96.
Blue Murphy started playing music in hippie drum circles when he was 19. He says, “Near that time, a friend had a bamboo flute he couldn't play, so he gave it to me. It was a Japanese flute called a shakuhachi. It was end-blown without the usual hole near the top. No one could get a sound out of it, so I spent a day and a half making myself dizzy until it finally sounded. It became an extension of my arm after that. My friend John Paul and I started a duo called OneSong. We did drums and flute and poetry. Somehow or another I lost the flute and didn't play anything for a couple of years. I found I couldn't live without playing music, so I picked up the bass. I've been playing ever since. I've been in a folk rock band, an Irish/Old-time band (Ten Penny Bit), a few Bluegrass bands, and most recently in a gypsy swing band.”
Available in the Louisville, KY area for parties, festivals and other performances.
Call (502)897-9298 for bookings and more information.