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Django's 100th Birthday At The Iridium

Dorado Schmitt, legendary gypsy guitarist from France, has been at the center of the Django music resurgence in the US by appearing regularly at the Django Reinhardt NY Festival.  Besides starring at  the festival, he has toured the country with Allstar Bands  promoting the Django Reinhardt style at such  venues as The Kennedy  Center, Disney Hall, Rose Hall at Jazz at Lincoln Center, The SF Festival, Caramoor  and more...to great acclaim.

His highly anticipated return to the US this January will be in a major tour celebrating the 100th Birthday of DJANGO REINHARDT, his idol, with a swing thru NYC at The IRIDIUM on February 1,2,& 3 with a special tribute to the great LES PAUL, Monday, February  1.  Les Paul cited Django as one of his favorite guitarists, was a personal friend, and was instrumental in settling Django's estate and was given a guitar valued at over $500,000.00.

Accompanying DORADO SCHMITT will be SAMSON SCHMITT -  his son, a young Gypsy Guitar star in his own right, MARCEL LOEFFLER - Virtuoso Accordionist,  PIERRE BLANCHARD - Violin master, all from France , accompanied by Veteran Bassist BRIAN TORFF who performed for years with Grappelli.  And, there will be surprises!

*Django's most important and well-known composition NUAGES will be performed by DORADO SCHMITT and Band with renowned Russian Cellist BORISLAV STRULEV, a world-premiere performance of "Nuages" with cello.  A special arrangement for cello has been written by top Pianist/Composer/Arranger ROGER KELLAWAY (who Conducted and Arranged the music for Clint Eastwoods' new film INVICTUS).

Special Guest: Curtis Stigers

If voices, like wines, had noses, Curtis Stigers’ would be dusky oak with hints of Willie Nelson, Harry Nilsson, Ray Charles and Matt Dennis. It’s a voice that’s at once young and old, tender and tough, warm and inviting as a caress, yet sturdy as a firm handshake.  -Christopher Loudon, JazzTimes

Curtis Stigers is at the forefront of a new generation of jazz singers with one of the most distinctive voices in music...Downbeat Magazine named him as one of the jazz genre’s “Rising Male Stars”.  He has toured the world with such renowned pop artists as Elton John, Eric Clapton, Bonnie Raitt, and Prince, while collaborating with  jazz greats  Nancy Wilson, George Benson, Herbie Hancock, Randy and Michael Brecker, Jeff "Tain" Watts, Chris Potter, Larry Goldings and Toots Thielmans.   Crossing from Pop to Jazz, he has been  called “one of the best male jazz singers of his generation” by JazzTimes.  Stigers's latest critically acclaimed recording, "Lost In Dreams," on Concord Jazz, was released in September 2009.

Re the music of DJANGO, STIGERS says" I just love the Django recordings.  Something just kills me about it and I can hear myself singing in that sound!"

The Django Allstar tour, celebrating Djano's 100th birthday (which is Jan. 24th), commences with an important concert at the Kennedy Center Jan. 16, onto Minneapolis at the Dakota Jan. 18 & 19,  Yoshis in Oakland Jan. 21-24, Kuumbwa in Santa Cruz Jan. 25, Catalina's in LA Jan. 26,27,28, The Orange County Performing Arts Center in Costa Mesa Jan 29 & 30, onto NY at the IRIDIUM Feb. 1,2,3, climaxing at the Montreal Jazz Festival Feb., 4,5,6 before heading back to France...Produced by Pat Philips & Ettore Stratta. The pair have also just released their new CD, Dorado Schmitt and The Django Reinhardt NY Festival Allstars "Live at the Kennedy Center" on their own label SP Productions. ..CD will be on sale during the tour.  (for info: patmusic2@aol.com)

DJANGO and GRAPPELLI met in the 30's in France to form The Hot Club  Quintette which took Europe by storm  and went on to become one of  the  most important musical partnerships in European history with a  hot jazz rendition of American pop standards, influenced by Ellington,  Armstrong and the like...Gypsy Jazz is still on the cutting edge and enjoying  enormous success around the world.  Young musicians as well as more  established are digging into Django's music , a torrent of guitar lines  on special string guitars with sounds all their own, easily  recognizable, virtuosic, hot and romantic.

Celebrity musicians and actors admire the music such as Leonardo DiCaprio who's dog is named Django, Sean Penn who starred in Woody Allen's  film "Sweet and Lo Down" about this music, Willie Nelson records it,  Tony Bennett wrote a lyric to Nuages, the most famous Django composition ... and more.

"Feb 1,2,3, is the  Centennial Celebration at one of NY's most important venues..."Historymaking  at THE IRIDIUM'  marking a music and master that continues to fascinate, inspire and bring joy...one  that has endured the test of time...and is still swinging!