Friday, October 5, 2012

Gypsy y Los Gatos Rumberos - Swingaro

A black cat, a sign of bad luck? Maybe bad luck and a haunting nightmare among musicians is that your instruments are gone, when you need them to do your job? At least, it's a loss of the tools that are needed for making music and to bring in some money for the next job, you have signed. If you then detect that your instruments have been stolen and brought to the pawnshop nearby to pay the bill at the barroom where you played a gig last night, now what to do? If your wallet is empty, you have to be smart - and maybe play tricks like this
The acting musicians in this intertaining video are members of the Spanish string-swing ensemble Gypsy y Los Gatos Rumberos from Requena (Valencia). They are Vicente Navarro "Gypsy" on lead guitar, Robert Hernandez "Chory" on rhythm guitar, Carolina Gomez on violin, Luis Marzo "Anteater" on bass and Vicente Fernandez on percussion. The accompanying sound-track of this imitation of a black-and-white silent movie comedy is composed and performed by the ensemble and titled Diente de oro (Golden tooth).
Gypsy y Los Gatos Rumberes was formed in 2008, the group was fascinated by the string-swing style of Django Reinhardt - the Jazz Manouche or Gypsy Jazz - and soon elaborated a repertoire and fused the original Manouche influence with "(...) rumba, charleston, different 'clubs' of flamenco, Balkan folk and much, much, swing ..." according to the notes at the presentation web
In 2009 they recorded their first demo,"Djangueando", toured France and gave a number of concerts in Valencia, Castile-La Mancha and Andalusia, ending with a big concert at the Teatro Principal de Requena. In 2010 there was the only lineup change with the arrival of Carolina Gomez, a classically trained violinist. Earlier this year the group released their first cd, SWINGARO
The cd has twelve tracks, eight of them are compositions by the group, such as Swing 69, Punki Suite, Typical Spanish, Djangueando, Para Oscar, Diente de Oro, Manoucheria and Lenny Swing. The remaining four tracks are standards like Ellington's Caravan and It don't mean a thing ..., Sing,Sing,Sing by Louis Prima and the traditional Gypsy tune known as Les Yeux Noirs.Added musicians on Sing,Sing,Sing are Pierre Guénégo (flute), José Antonio Ibáñez (dm) and Jorge G. Bastidas (cl).
The music on the cd is well played and well produced by Jorge Bastidas of Requena DBC Studies, the mix of influences as mentioned above are fused in a hard swinging way that invites dancers to get on the floor and get started. The interplay between the participating musicians is great, and even though you only want to listen to the music, your are also thoroughly entertained by these skilled musicians.
You can listen to and purchase all tracks of the SWINGARO cd at the web of Gypsy y Los Gatos Rumberos, here. - To end this, here's an example of a live-performance by the group recorded last year

NB! All photos and illustration are copied from the promo material at psm music, here

The Spanish group Gypsy y Los Gatos Rumberos continues the string-swing tradition from Django Reinhardt and the QHCF by fusing Manouche Jazz with rumba, charleston, different 'clubs' of flamenco, Balkan folk and swing. The group was established in 2008 in Requena (Valencia) and has after touring Spain and France released their first cd, SWINGARO, that shows off the danceable and entertaining style of the ensemble's string-swing. - The keep(it)swinging blogspot loves to inform you about such recordings and generally covers jazz and related music from 1912 to 2012.

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