Imagine Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys meeting Django Reinhardt and you have a sense of what the Hot Club of Cowtown is about.
Since its beginnings in the late 1990s, the Hot Club of Cowtown has seen its star continue to rise as its reputation for jaw-dropping virtuosity and unforgettable live shows became its global brand. Lauded for its “down-home melodies and exuberant improvisation” by the Times of London, the band 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,” according to the Independent. The 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,” and the Belfast Telegraph calls them “a pretty much perfect country trio at the very top of their game.”
Along with the group’s dedicated cult following worldwide, certain titans of the industry have also taken notice. Bob Dylan, with whom the band toured, has been inspired by the trio. The Hot Club of Cowtown has opened several shows for Willie Nelson, toured with Nelson and Dylan during a summer-long stadium tour, and opened seven nights of the English rock band Roxy Music’s sold-out stadium tour in the United Kingdom in 2011. The Hot Club of Cowtown continues to tour extensively in the United Kingdom and has been featured at the Glastonbury Festival. It has also been a returning guest on the British television show Later . . . with Jools Holland, the Cambridge Folk Festival, and BBC Radio 2’s Radcliffe and Maconie Show and the Bob Harris Country show.
Their latest project, Rendezvous in Rhythm, is a lively collection of fourteen Gypsy songs and American Songbook standards. It is the Hot Club of Cowtown’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 Stéphane Grappelli.
An arsenal of technique and joy.
—New York Times
It takes considerable bravery to name your band after one of the greatest jazz ensembles of the last century. Hot Club get away with it because they have spirit, originality and skill that would surely have impressed Stéphane Grappelli and Django Reinhardt back in 1930s.
Unfussy and unpretentious, their blend of down-home melodies and exuberant improvisation harks back to a lost era of so-called western swing.