The Hot Club of San Francisco | Postcards from Gypsyland

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Jazz: Gypsy Jazz World: Gypsy Moods: Instrumental
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Postcards from Gypsyland

by The Hot Club of San Francisco

Gypsy Jazz, Gypsy Swing, acoustic jazz, chamber jazz, all-string jazz, Jazz Manouche
Genre: Jazz: Gypsy Jazz
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Not So Fast
5:54 $0.99
2. Spivy
3:43 $0.99
3. La Gitane
4:10 $0.99
4. Waltz Una Nota
4:09 $0.99
5. Alle Presse Con Una Verde Milonga
6:23 $0.99
6. Lover's Leap
4:04 $0.99
7. Il Camino
4:02 $0.99
8. Jonesin'
4:36 $0.99
9. Theme from Gypsyland (Nuages)
4:32 $0.99
10. Pavane Pour Une Infante Defunt
3:10 $0.99
11. Song of India
3:06 $0.99
12. Melodie Au Crepscule
4:22 $0.99
13. Manoir De Mes Reves
2:42 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
Can a band with nine releases in just a dozen years delve deep into new musical ground while staying true to their school? The Hot Club of San Francisco has done just that with Postcards from Gypsyland.

Django Reinhardt-inspired Gypsy-swing - with acoustic guitars and violin as the prime movers - is still the heart and soul of the HCSF. And this band is one of the few Hot Club-style groups in the U.S. who truly deliver on the promise of the name. (Their moniker is a nod to Reinhardt's original Quintette du Hot Club de France.) Postcards from Gypsyland includes ample evidence of the band's love of the genre, as you can hear on their rendition of Reinhardt's own "Spivy," as well as the band's original tunes such as "Lover's Leap" and "Not So Fast." HCSF bandleader Paul Mehling even took the bold step of setting original lyrics to Reinhardt's best-known composition "Nuages" (appearing here as "Theme from Gypsyland").

However, Postcards from Gypsyland opens the Gypsy-swing aperture a little wider to let in new colors and new textures. "Jonesin'" augments the classic Hot Club quintet sound with the addition of a swinging string quartet, with exhilarating results. The enchanting "Alle Prese con una Verde Milonga" (by Italian singer Paolo Conte) features an even larger string orchestra.

There are smaller, more intimate moments on Postcards from Gypsyland as well. Reinhardt's lovely "Manoir de Mes Rêves," for example, is deftly delivered via two unaccompanied acoustic guitars - with Mehling on baritone and wunderkind Sam Miltich on regular 6-string. The HCSF foregoes the usual string-rich Hot Club quintet setting again on "Melodie au Crepuscule," opting instead for focused finesse.

Postcards from Gypsyland is at once a tribute to the sound and style of Gypsy-swing guitarist Django Reinhardt and an original artistic statement. The Hot Club of San Francisco asks - and answers - its own questions about how period music can be expanded in all directions to include new shades of excitement, romance, drama, and humor, without ever marring the integrity of the music's original design. It's a safe bet that the master himself would approve.

Key Selling Points:

* CD produced by Adam Levy (Norah Jones' guitarist)
* National Press Mailing of 300 CDs
* Lots of concerts and festival appearances in 2005
* Available for In-stores



to write a review

Jim Santella

Theirs is a pleasant outing, performed with brilliant musicianship and built aro

Postcards from Gypsyland
The Hot Club of San Francisco | Lost Wax Music

By Jim Santella

With their ninth CD release, the Hot Club of San Francisco brings a contemporary, acoustic, all-string jazz band to the music of Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli. Theirs is a pleasant outing, performed with brilliant musicianship and built around a theme of romantic passion.

Reinhardt's memorable "Nuages" is given lyrics and dressed up in sensual attire. Like most of the program, this familiar anthem pours gently from the heart without having to bring overt emotions into the formula. The music sinks in gently and casts a soothing cloud over the room. Violin, bass, and guitars swing lightly with laid back enthusiasm. The use of melodica to emulate an accordion's cultural ties brings this swing band even closer to the original.
Evan Price, of the Turtle Island String Quartet, leads with an excellent violin performance. Guitarist Paul Mehling and bassist Ari Munkres add significant voices to the band's musical interpretations. Their performance has a calming effect that lasts. Even the ensemble's brighter, uptempo swingers, such as "Lover's Leap" and "Jonesin'," can leave you feeling completely relaxed and ready for bed. They've honored the memory of Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli, while keeping cool in the shade of some countryside corner that's far removed from the hustle and bustle of urban life.

Jim Santella has been contributing CD reviews, concert reviews and DVD reviews to AAJ since 1997. His work has also appeared in Southland Blues, The L.A. Jazz Scene, and Cadence Magazine.


Not a bad song on the album, and these guys put out the music! I'd say this is the best of their work, and probably the best collection in this genre of music.


Brilliant and beautiful and wonderful and delightful
This is a wonderful, beautiful CD. I can't stop listening to it. Everything about it is perfect. The Reinhardt/Grappelli influence is present, but this CD is its own. It is melancholy, sweet, and absolutely perfect.


Great cd, we have it in regular rotation in our shop
Like most groups, we're fairly eclectic and this cd is a hit with all of us. We play it regularly and customers ask us about it. We're so pleased to be playing the work of these San Francisco musicians.


Wonderful gypsy jazz!
Beautiful acoustic jazz played by folks who obviously have a love and an ear for it. Very well done!


excellent! this is the first cd i've purchased in years where i haven't been disappointed. i've been playing this cd for everybody at work (12 people, mostly country-and-western fans) and they agree with me. get this cd!