Marielle de Rocca–Serra – violin; Stacy McMichael – bass; Sam Random – guitar; Kevin Rush – guitar; Candace Washburn – vocals. Special Guests : Corey Wilkes – trumpet; Shawn Maxwell – tenor sax; Adam Thornburg – trombone; Bryan Pardo – clarinet; Stephen Lynerd – tambourine; Gabriel Datcu – guitar.
Produced by Nick Eipers and Stacy McMichael. Engineered by Nick Eipers.
“Something different and exciting is brewing on lePercolateur's Pop Manouche… The core instrumentation—violin, multiple guitars and bass—immediately points to the gypsy in lePercolateur's soul. Some energetic tunes with upbeat guitar accents and feisty violin work confirm this connection and fly by in fun fashion ("Bad Crazy Day"), but nothing flies too close to the gypsy jazz norm; the songs themselves and the presence of vocalist Candace Washburn, who injects a good amount of the "pop" into Pop Manouche, make sure of that… Pop Manouche presents a band that drinks from the Quintette du Hot Club de France's well, yet finds sustenance in other musical realms. This stylistic openness contributes to the success of the hybridized music that lePercolateur produces.”
– Dan Bilawsky, AllAboutJazz.com
“Candace Washburn easily evokes the heart–on–sleeve overtones of Random's lyrics with her bright, attractive voice... bassist Stacy McMichael is a terrific accompanist, with her razor sharp lines and brilliant bass tone. Violinist Marielle de Rocca–Serra, meanwhile, has gypsy jazz oozing from her supple phrases... The nuanced manner in which pop and folk styles are interlaced remind one of the fine work of Mumford & Sons. With ace production and a wonderful group dynamic, one can only hope that there are many more recordings to come from lePercolateur.”
– Dan Healy, Chicago Jazz Magazine
“Candace Washburn fronts the group through eleven original compositions so good I swear I’ve heard some of them, and sung along, before... And while it’s gypsy jazz, it’s not the same old bunch of tunes you’ve been hearing since the 30s. Guitar guy Sam Random writes the lyrics, and those universal themes that make a tune a standard are all there&$133; I’ll need another fix soon, guys. Don’t wait too long. This disc is highly recommended.”
– Doug Boynton, GirlSingers.co.uk
“lePercolateur provides a logical musical combination which, oddly, has rarely been heard before, a Chanteuse style female vocalist with the Django-influenced group. The result is a lot of fun... And the band's influences run wide. They do the expected jazzy music that can evoke 1930s French cabaret, the band also creates tune in a style more typical of a rock band, and they can sometimes get a little ethereal. So the album is as musically interesting as it is rhythmically infectious. It's also lyrically clever much of the time.. an impressive and fun album that continues the revived interest in the style of Django Reinhardt and adds a strong streak of musical eclecticism... lePercolateur has emerged as a first rate group that offers something different and an original twist to Gypsy jazz revival.”
– George Graham, WVIA Pennsylvania
“This group has a mellow cabaret and jazz sound. It is a very cool sounding CD with a European flavor.”
– Doug Lewis, WVGN Virgin Islands
“Hot stomping “Bad Crazy Day” and “Waiting for the End of the World” feature Washburn’s earthy delivery awhile the team cooks on Bunsen burners on ”Dancing in the Kitchen” and “Goin’ Out.” Perfect music for steppin’ out with your babe.”
– George W. Harris, Jazz Weekly.com
As the railyard bled into dark warehouses, the stranger found himself alone. Street after street he walked with night taking control of his senses until his ears perked at the music of sirens. The dulcet tones of violin, bass, and the female voice spiraled through the darkness from the sole source of warmth in sight. Helplessly drawn in, he found the last lit trailer in camp that seemed to have sprung forth from another time, and there –– in the form of three women –– was both the past and the future in one.
He introduced himself as Sam Random and explained that his path and his name were inextricably linked. Sensing a kindred spirit, they proffered their names: Marielle de Rocca–Serra held the violin, Stacy McMichael propped up the bass fiddle, and Candace Washburn's voice had beckoned him in. As Sam sat at their fire and opened up his tattered guitar case, another man, his elder, stepped forth from the darkness having been drawn in from afar. Armed too with a guitar, he announced himself as Kevin Rush and sat with no concern as to whether he'd been invited – simply knowing he was home. Fueled by coffee black as the night they found themselves in and so dark it could have been wartime, they played through 'til the sun began painting the eastern horizon red.
Winding their caravan through the windiest of cities, lePercolateur has spent the time since this fateful night sweeping in to transport concert–goers to a time where music was a liberating and cathartic respite from persecution –– where the frenetic energy of struggling simply to be coalesced with the unbridled spirit of gypsy music and burgeoned into swing dancing. The troupe transforms Katerina's into a sold–out Parisian dance hall circa 1937 on a monthly basis. Their high–energy sideshow has made Percolateers of attendees of the Jazz Institute of Chicago's 2011 & 2012 Jazz Tour, the 2010 and 2011 Chicago Cultural Center's "Music Without Borders" series, and Purdue University's Swing Dance. They were Featured Artists in both 2009 and 2011 in the Windy City Lindy Exchange, through which they flaunted their uncanny ability to seamlessly fuse two different eras via their reinterpretations of modern pop through the medium of hipster gypsy jazz. Along the way, these temporally displaced merry-makers placed 3rd at the Chicago Bluegrass and Blues Festival's "Last Banjo Standing" contest.