Legendary Musician John Jorgenson Releases Two New Albums Today – One Stolen Night and Istiqbal Gathering Celebrates Centennial of Gypsy Guitarist Django Reinhardt

Nashville, Tenn.— As one of the pioneers of American gypsy jazz music, Jorgenson is celebrating the father of gypsy jazz, Django Reinhardt, whose 100th birthday would have been this year, with two album releases and a touring schedule that takes him across the country and across the pond with the John Jorgenson Quintet. Widely known as the “U.S. Ambassador of Gypsy Jazz,” Jorgenson has earned a reputation as a world-class musician and guitarist and has collaborated with the likes of Elton John, Luciana Pavarotti, Bonnie Raitt and Bob Dylan. Both new releases see this legendary musician exploring new elements of world music, bluegrass, rock and classical as Jorgenson expands the range of gypsy jazz, captivating and enlightening fellow musicians and listeners along the way.

One Stolen Night, Jorgenson’s first 2010 release, is the second album credited to the John Jorgenson Quintet, following up on the Billboard Jazz chart success of Ultraspontane. This collection contains a mix of standards and new compositions, with plenty of clarinet and swing, plus a vocal and the addition of the Greek bouzouki into the Quintet’s instrumentation. The Quintet recorded all of the tracks in two days using minimal production, resulting in a “live in the studio” sound that is warm, rich and so crisp that it transports the listeners to an intimate private concert.

The album features a driving rhythm section throughout as Jorgenson creates a classic gypsy jazz feel while pushing the boundaries with his arrangements and melodic content. “Red on Red” opens the album with fanfare and Django-inspired minor key swing, while “Mediterranean Blues” highlights a fiery jam session between violin and guitar. The title track, “One Stolen Night,” presents a captivating melody and showcases the enchanting sound of the bouzouki. Throughout the album the John Jorgenson Quintet creates a unique musical experience that equally enthralls the most discerning and the casual music fan with a sound that is all at once dynamic, romantic, driving, melodic and accessible.

Jorgenson’s second album release in 2010, Istiqbal Gathering, is the culmination of a long relationship between Jorgenson and Paul Gambill, conductor of Orchestra Nashville, and was recorded live at Ocean Way Nashville and the Schermerhorn Symphony Center. Jorgenson and Gambill combined with a world-class team of musicians and collaborators to create the first collection of music specifically composed and recorded for gypsy jazz guitar and orchestra.

Jorgenson’s brilliant guitar work leads the way, supported by the progressive and dynamic Orchestra Nashville. “Concerto Glasso” and “Istiqbal Gathering” feature a full orchestra, the latter showcasing the breathtaking talents of Alexander Fedoriuk on cimbalom and David Davidson on violin. “Dieter’s Lounge” and “Groove in the Louvre” feature the unexpected blend of string orchestra along with the GRAMMY award-winning Turtle Island Quartet. The combination is a groundbreaking album full of soaring melodies and driving rhythms, and it is utterly one of a kind.

The John Jorgenson Quintet is the only American act to ever headline the prestigious Django Reinhardt Memorial Festival in France, and has been featured at other “Djangofests” in the U.S., UK, Germany and Canada. For the films Gattica and Head in the Clouds Jorgenson was tapped to recreate Django’s music, and in the latter he even appeared onscreen as Django with stars Charlize Theron and Penelope Cruz.

Despite the levels of success Jorgenson has already attained, the acclaimed musician has no intention of taking it easy any time soon. Building on the legacy of Reinhardt, Jorgenson continues to expand the popularity of his beloved gypsy jazz by offering listeners an exotic yet familiar sound to which they can relate. If 2010 is any indication, we can expect Jorgenson to take gypsy jazz to new heights for many years to come.

Early Praise for One Stolen Night and Istiqbal Gathering:

L.A. Times Feature

“This CD shows off (Jorgenson’s) guitar wizardry…as a master of the subtleties and rhythmic complexities of Django Reinhardt-inspired “gypsy jazz.” He plays clarinet, soprano sax and bouzouki on this one, while he’s at it, and his much-lauded jazz quintet proves his match.” — Barry Mazor, The Wall Street Journal

“Hoo-boy! If you like hot jazz, gypsy refrains and Balkan ballads, I’ve got just the ticket.” — Mark Tucker, Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange

“…this is a wild ride that’s hard to pin down as anything except glorious, pure music.” — Chris Spector, Midwest Record

“John Jorgenson is one of the world’s greatest guitarists and his Gypsy Jazz chops are up there with the best of them. This album (Istiqbal Gathering) breaks new ground… and in some respects, this is a symphony to Django Reinhardt.” — Marc Schwartz, Djangology.net

Published in: on February 16, 2010 at 12:03 PM  Leave a Comment  

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