Last week I spent a day at DjangoFest on Whidbey Island. In case this doesn’t mean anything to you, you can search “Gypsy Jazz” or “Django Reinhardt” in cyberspace to hear what this music sounds like. Or, watch the two below videos.
The first one is of an informal jam session outside a coffeeshop in Langley. I sat in with this group for a song shortly after taking the video – the guitarist on the right needed a break.
The second one below is of an impromptu jam in the small merchandise room off the main concert venue.
At DjangoFest that day, I also took in a concert featuring two 19-year-olds from the Berklee School of Music, who were phenomenal. They were the just the opening act. The headliner was Sebastien Ginaux with his Trio. Ginaux is a shy Frenchman who speaks little English, but his playing that day was on fire. He would pile arpeggios on top of each other so quickly that the music constantly shifted keys, moods, and directions, endlessly surprising. He would sometimes punctuate melodies with splashes of difficult “false” harmonic tones that rang as clear as chimes. It was complex, but beautiful music.