Magazine article Strings

Hot Moment

Magazine article Strings

Hot Moment

Article excerpt

Violinist Jason Anick spies a resurgence in Gypsy jazz. When the Berklee College of Music instructor lectured on the genre at the American String Teachers Association's March conference, he encountered proof of the interest he sensed had been growing for a while.

"The clinic was completely full-not an empty seat," Anick recalled in a phone call from Boston. "That's about 100 teachers from all around the country that have about 100 students .... I just see it spreading more and more." Anick said the community aspect of Gypsy music, which began around campfires with songs passed down through generations, has lent to Gypsy jazz's inclusive energy. At ASTA, he argued that it's a great segue from the classical realm to jazz.

It's a fitting moment for Anick and his colleagues comprising the Rhythm Future Quartet-guitarists Olli Soikkeli and Max O'Rourke and bassist Greg Loughman-to release their second record, Travels, in February. The 13-track album on the Magic Fiddle Music label features ten original works, composed and arranged by members.

While the ensemble's 2014 self-titled first album drew from classic Gypsy-jazz repertoire-the new group wanted to release an album quickly, Anick explained-this one aims to push boundaries. Tracks fuse various styles while staying true to the "swinging, string-driven sounds of the past."

"Vesella," one of Anick's compositions, uses an odd meter inspired by Balkan music. "Keeper" and "Amsterdam" have a Latin groove. In "Still Winter," which Anick describes as having a "classical essence," he overlaid string parts for an orchestral feeling. …

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