Rhythm Future Quartet, USA

For the fifth performance of the 2017-2018 Season, we invite you to the Cultural Arts Center at Montgomery College, Silver Spring/Takoma Park, MD to hear the Rhythm Future Quartet perform.

Performance: March 24, 2018, 8pm.
Tickets: MarlowGuitar.org

“These young men are incredible!!! Don’t miss them… such dedication and love of music to witness!”

-Tommy Emmanuel

“Rhythm Future Quartet breaks new ground for Gypsy jazz.”
The Boston Globe

The acoustic jazz ensemble, Rhythm Future Quartet has a straightforward agenda: to keep the spirit of Gypsy jazz alive and expanding in today’s musical universe. The virtuosic foursome, named for a Django Reinhardt tune, offers up a newly minted sound, influenced by the classic Hot Club of France, yet wholly contemporary. Led by violinist Jason Anick and guitarist Olli Soikkeli, the quartet performs dynamic and lyrical arrangements of both Gypsy jazz standards and original compositions that draw upon diverse international rhythms and musical idioms. With Max O’Rourke on second guitar and Greg Loughman on bass, Rhythm Future is dedicated to expanding the boundaries of a vital musical genre.

Where the band’s self-titled debut album re-visited classic jazz and Gypsy jazz favorites, Travels, the quartet’s current release, concentrates on group originals that make captivating use of musical sources from outside the conventional Gypsy jazz terrain. Travels reflects both the accumulated knowledge garnered from the groups worldwide touring as well as the international influences that inspired new rhythmic and harmonic possibilities within their compositions and arrangements. Garnering critical acclaim, Travels was picked as one of the Best jazz albums of 2016 by All About Jazz and the Huffington Post.

Jason Anick, an award-winning composer and one of the youngest professors at the esteemed Berklee College of Music in Boston, has shared the stage with an array of artists including Grammy award winning guitarist John Jorgenson, Stevie Wonder, The Jim Kweskin Jug Band, and Tommy Emmanuel. Olli Soikkeli (coined “the Finnish boy wonder”) recently made the move from Scandinavia to New York City, where he quickly became a top call guitarist in the bustling Brooklyn jazz scene. He has performed alongside rising star Cyrille Aimee, world-renowned Gypsy guitarist Stochelo Rosenberg, Bucky Pizzarelli and many others.

Max O’Rourke was the winner of the 2015 Saga Award from DjangoFest Northwest, and at 21 has already toured/recorded with many of the top American Gypsy Jazz musicians including John Jorgenson and Gonzalo Bergara. Greg Loughman is a top call bassist in Boston and has been heard with such luminaries as Sheila Jordan, Curtis Fuller and George Garzone.

Come by for a delightful program of gypsy jazz music, March 24, 2018, 8pm.
Program will be announced from the stage – buy tickets here: marlowguitar.org
We look forward to seeing you there!
Pre-Concert Talk will be given by: Seth Kibel
Seth Kibel is one of the Mid-Atlantic’s premier woodwind specialists, working with some of the best bands in jazz, swing, and more.

Review: Deborah Drayer – Pearl Django, USA

Pearl Django-Pic-Fix

Pearl Django and “Le Jazz Hot”  April 5, 2014 at the Westmoreland Congregational UCC.

The last concert of this season’s John E. Marlow Guitar Series left us on both an upbeat and a downbeat note.  The upbeat was the original sound of Pearl Django, a fine quintet of two guitars (Selmer Maccaferri style guitars), violin, accordion and bass from Seattle which dished out a unique blend of gypsy, jazz and bluesy sounds dotted with tricky improvisations that had the audience breaking into spontaneous applause, piece after beat-bopping piece.

The first set kicked off with Daphne, a saucy hit by Django Reinhardt that got things moving and it was all uphill from there.  The Marlow Guitar audience typically doesn’t applaud in the middle of a work (it’s not like a Bach fugue is going to get people clapping before it’s over); so, it’s a breath of fresh air for us to let loose for a night and take in the bohemian freedom that comes with a genre we don’t usually hear on the Series or WETA during morning/evening rush hours.  Perhaps if the station played an occasional Pearl Django ditty like Prozac Musette there might be less road rage noted during the traffic reports.  But, last night, we, at least, had our collective blood pressure lowered and drove home with a good grip of finger clicking energy.

I may have imagined it but I picked up on a hint of the Appalachian in Daphne that just goes to show our musical DNA is connected across continents and ages.  It’s not coincidental that a tune which may have started out in eastern Europe might find its way to the eastern mountains of the New World, but you should hear it for yourselves, if not in person, on their CDs:  my personal favorite is Modern Times (though Daphne‘s not on it), but there are more recent recordings including Eleven and other notables.  A quick visit to Pearl Django’ s website will provide you with many of the delightful sounds we heard last Saturday, so do yourself a favor and visit:  http://www.pearldjango.com/files/cdcatalog.htm.  You’re sure to add a distinctive sound to your recorded collections.

Regarding the downbeat of the evening, the John E. Marlow Guitar Series’ long time Artistic Director, and impresario debonair, Regis Ferruzza, is retiring after a lifetime of service to the series and broader Washington community.  For 20 years, Regis and Tim Healy have been the dynamic duo behind this successful venture and Regis will be missed by all who know and have worked with him over his career… from serving his country in uniform, to accomplished performer, instructor and mentor to the many artists who have made their way to the stage of this exceptional series. Regis will be returning to his home town of Pittsburgh to take in the stellar Italian cooking of his beloved sister and kicking back to listen, no doubt, to all that cornerstone town of America has to offer.  We wish Regis all the best as he transitions to the next chapter and turns the page on a job well done.  One never knows until one has to walk in another’s shoes all that individual has shouldered; and, I can tell you from one who has helped a bit in the search for the right person to take his place how much Regis has contributed to this town’s musical aesthetic.  Please join me in wishing Regis the fondest of farewells.  We hope he will come back and visit to just relax, listen, and let others do the job of making six Saturdays a year the highlight of their season.  Thank you Regis!  We could not have done it without you.

— Deborah Drayer