by Denis Chang Since the early 2000s, there has been a global surge in the popularity of Gypsy Jazz and the music of Django Reinhardt. Many articles have been written about it, and many myths have been perpetuated as to the origins of Gypsy Jazz. As of this date of January 23rd (Django’s...
And check this out -
That, and I must second stuart's "question" regarding gypsy waltzes.
Very useful reading for newbies in pArticular
What a treat as always, I feel I was in a Class that I Love and can't wait for the next one.
So Glad this Community is here, the Wealth of Knowledge Shared is Appreciated.
I wrote somewhat extensively about this in the french GJ forums a while back if anyone reads French www.guitarejazzmanouche.com I'd have to locate the actual post but it was a reply to someone who tried to create an online gypsy jazz school with actual gypsy players, but i told him it would be very difficult and explained why. he was confident it would work and was advertising it, even had promo videos, went against my advice, and now, i was right, it never happened ;-).
Well, the pedagogic tradition is simple, there isn't really one particular system, and when many of them teach, it's not really specific lessons in the form of "Ok , on Am7, play this scale, and arpeggio". It's more generic advice : "you play too loud/use your wrist/ slow down/it doesn't sound right". You can already see that in the Dorado video with Samson... Off the top of my head, the words that Dorado was using in romani were along the lines of "here/ no, here / there we go / slowly"
I know in Belgium/Holland where they have a lot of family gatherings and jams. It's basically the adults jamming together, then a curious kid might pick up a guitar and try to follow... someone might show them a few basic shapes, and from there the kid has to figure it out on his own... if the adults see that he has a good sense of observation, they'll show him a bit more, and on and on it goes. If the kid sucks, they make him play the bass hahahahaha.
For a lot of the best Dutch players, the main source of inspiration was Wasso Grunholz. He is the son of Latscheben Grunholz who is the grandfather of Stochelo. Latscheben was not much of a guitar player, but he was playing with his brothers Piotto (Tcha's grandfather) and Bamboula Ferre (I mentioned this in the article). They weren't really jazz musicians, just 3 guys who learned a lot of old melodies and played them very well.
Wasso does not improvise very much, and a lot of his solos are constructed, but he is a prolific composer and arranger. He has a great talent for coming up with beautiful chord voicings/progressions and very beautiful lines. He was the main source of inspiration for all our favorite Dutch players.
I could probably write another aticle one day about this, but by and large , what i wrote above is how things generally work. The student is shown a few basic things and has to rely on his intuition to figure out the rest. So it makes sense that those who have the biggest sense of observation go on to be the best in their community, and those who don't are just occasional players.
If someone could occassionaly play this music I would be mighty impressed -its a bit like doing the occassion Formula 1 Race