Lou Lou and the Gypsy Jivers | Gypsy Jive

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Jazz: Gypsy Jazz Jazz: African Jazz Moods: Type: Acoustic
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Gypsy Jive

by Lou Lou and the Gypsy Jivers

"This is a ground breaking new album fusing the music of Django Reinhardt/Gypsy Jazz with South African Township swing jazz and Southern African Jazz!"
Genre: Jazz: Gypsy Jazz
Release Date: 

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Tracks

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1. De Makeba
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2:52 $0.99
2. New Years in Cape Town
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3:53 $0.99
3. Banana ba Rustenburg
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3:37 $0.99
4. Geri's Gallop
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3:08 $0.99
5. Teasing Fella
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4:44 $0.99
6. Oh! Lady be good
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3:24 $0.99
7. Pata Pata
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3:44 $0.99
8. Something New in Africa
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3:58 $0.99
9. Violet's Dance
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10. Django's Castle
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ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Louis "Lou Lou" Matthee teamed up with Joe Kyle Jr., Tom Griesser, and Ralph Carney to create a joyful expression of acoustic bliss on “Gypsy Jive”, the debut album from the Oakland-based Lou Lou and the Gypsy Jivers. This album is a fresh upbeat hybrid blend of South African Jazz and Gypsy Jazz that takes music lovers on a musical and geographical journey through South Africa. Music lovers’ will first visit a swinging 60's Soweto township shebeen (e.g., pub) as in “De Makeba” or a Ghoema (e.g., traditional Cape Town style of music) inspired celebration of New Year’s in Cape Town. Then they will see in their mind’s eye how a majestic giraffe sways and gallops along to the groove in Gerri’s Gallop. Throughout the entire album, music lovers will have a front seat beside the gypsy musician as he travels from town to town, playing a nomadic travel diary of sound throughout South Africa.

How did this unique sound come about?

While growing up in South Africa, Lou Lou was surrounded by the eclectic tapestry of sounds in South Africa. As a Gypsy Jazz instructor, soloist and rhythm expert Lou Lou has performed at Iceland DjangoFest, DjangoFest Northwest, and many other concert events across the United States. Early on, Lou Lou recognized that South African Jazz and Gypsy Jazz have the same lively bustling energy. Sensing a unique challenge and opportunity to do something fresh, Lou Lou led the band to forge this vivacious vintage sound at Myles Boysen Studios in Oakland using 16-track analog tape. Lou Lou and the Gypsy Jivers recommend playing this music loud with dancing shoes on, as the rhythms and sounds are simply infectious!

The musicians recorded in this album:
• Louis “Lou Lou” Matthee: Guitarist
• Joe Kyle Jr.: Bassist
• Tom Griesser: Horns
• Ralph Carney: Penny whistle and Flute


Reviews


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Ned Boynton

Syncretism
There is a good case to be made that the great virtuoso guitarist Django Reinhardt was the first “world musician”. Django played the music of his gypsy tribe on the stringed instruments from his family caravan. He then went further and assimilated the sounds of American hot jazz into his music to create a new sound not only for the guitar but also for jazz and popular music in general. This act of blending the music of other cultures has a big college word to describe it: Syncretism. This assimilation speaks to the underlying unity of these seemingly different musics and cultures.

Louis Mathee, in his new release “Lou Lou and the gypsy Jivers”, does exactly what Django did; that is, he has assimilated the sounds from his upbringing and cultural heritage with the sounds of what we now call “gypsy jazz”. The really interesting thing is Louis is from South Africa. The sounds we hear on this CD are the sounds of South African, gypsy and American music thru the filter of Lou Lou’s brilliant guitar work. The music is quite joyful and exciting, complete with scorching tempos and virtuoso lead work. But it’s the band that makes the recording really fly. The band is totally happening and utilizes some great tones from the likes of Ralph Carney playing penny whistle, flute and clarinet, Tom Griesser on reeds and Joe Kyle on bass. The rhythm guitar chair is dynamic and totally fun, it really adds that extra flavor of joy to the music.


Clearly it is not enough for a band to simply emulate the music of Django Reinhardt. Too often “Hot Club” style bands fall into the stale predictable rut of playing older swing tunes and Django Reinhardt originals. What Lou Lou and the Gypsy Jivers gives us on this release is not only a nod to the master but a cross-cultural statement that deserves to be heard. After all, Lou Lou gives us what Django impersonators have missed – a unique and personal musical voice. This reviewer says go get this recording and enjoy!

Yolandi Carr

Refreshing twist
A refreshing combination!! Most enjoyable!!