Pearl Django: Smoke Gets in Your Eyes
Smoke Gets in Your Eyes
Avalon (Modern Hot Records MHR005)
Neil Andersson, Dudley Hill, Shelley D. Park (guitars), Michael Gray (violin), Rick Leppanen (bass).
Composed by Jerome Kern & Otto Harbach.
Recorded: Tacoma, WA, July 2000
Rating: 88/100 (learn more)
What goes around, comes around. In 1930s Paris, The Quintette of the Hot Club of France, featuring Django Reinhardt & Stéphane Grappelli, revived the 1920s acoustic guitar and violin style of Americans Eddie Lang & Joe Venuti. In 1990s Tacoma, Pearl Django (jointly named after rockers Pearl Jam and the Gypsy swing guitarist) in turn back-translated the prewar French style, here covering a 1935 Reinhardt & Grappelli recording. There was, of course, only one Django, and front-man Andersson judiciously avoids imitation. Instead, this lively track, highlighted by Gray's alternately arco and pizzicato violin, demonstrates the group's fluent and cohesive buoyancy.
Reviewer: Alan Kurtz