Hot Club of Cowtown
Date: Thursday, September 28, 2017
Location: Starr Theater at Walton Arts Center
Since its beginnings in the late 1990s, Hot Club of Cowtown’s star has continued to rise as its reputation for jaw-dropping virtuosity and unforgettable live shows has become the band’s global brand.
Lauded for its “down-home melodies and exuberant improvisation” (The Times, London), the Hot Club has always woven a combination of seemingly disparate styles together to its own magical effect, setting up camp “at that crossroads where country meets jazz and chases the blues away” (The Independent), and “conscious always that above all else, the music is for dancing and an oldfashioned good time” (New York Times). The band’s musical alchemy has been described as “another breathless journey in the Texas tardis” (The Times, London), while American Songwriter observed that “The excellent three players of this band could be doing anything but have chosen to honor the greats of jazz and swing with their sound.” The Belfast Telegraph calls them “a pretty much perfect country trio at the very top of their game,” while the New York Times, reviewing a live performance in New York City in 2011, describes the trio as armed with “an arsenal full of technique and joy.” Along with the Hot Club’s dedicated cult following worldwide, certain titans of the industry have also taken notice. Bob Dylan, with whom the band toured and with whom James has toured and recorded, is a continuing inspiration. The Hot Club has opened several shows for Willie Nelson, toured with Nelson and Dylan during a summer-long stadium tour, and recently opened seven nights of Roxy Music’s sold-out “For Your Pleasure” U.K. stadium tour in early 2011. In the U.K. the Hot Club of Cowtown continues to tour extensively and has been featured at the Glastonbury Festival and has also been a returning guest on Later With Jools Holland, the Cambridge Folk Festival, and BBC Radio 2’s Radcliffe and Maconie and Bob Harris Country shows. Their latest project, Rendezvous in Rhythm, is an exuberant collection of 14 Gypsy songs and American Songbook standards. It is the Hot Club’s first-ever album dedicated exclusively to the Gypsy jazz and French swing of Paris in the 1930s, featuring the band’s sparkling spins on standards in the style of legendary hot jazz titans Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli.