The year is and the place is Paris. Together they form the legendary Quintette du Hot Club de France, one of the most original, inventive bands ever to exist, the ensemble that gave the world the fluid virtuosity of Gypsy Jazz.
The year is and the place is Paris.
Together they form the legendary Quintette du Hot Club de France, one of the most original, inventive bands ever to exist, the ensemble that gave the world the fluid virtuosity of Gypsy Jazz. That joyous, elegant music became the inspiration for singer Tatiana Eva-Marie and violinist Adrien Chevalier in founding and perfecting the Avalon Jazz band. It has quite literally been a long journey across continents for them, from Old World to New, and the remarkable results sparkle on their debut CD, Je Suis Swing.
Five years ago we decided to move to New York and play the music here. Eventually we found some wonderful musicians who understood it.
Our clarinetist and bass player are from Canada, and both the guitarists have been obsessed with Django since they were teenagers. But the Avalon Jazz Band breathe true Gallic authenticity. She brings a distinctive, feminine touch to the music. We bring ourselves and our personalities to it. Fabric was rationed, but the men would wear big, massive suits.
It was their way of fighting back, of saying they were young and alive. And the lyrics are very accessible and poetic in a popular way, but they also have depth. Even after they had the right musicians to create the sound in their hearts, they spent a long time touring and honing their arrangements across America and Europe, even in the Caribbean.
We have spaces in our arrangements for solos, and we try to make each other laugh and feel something. And dance, of course.
Two years later, she recorded her first solo album and performed in her first professional theatre play. She fell in love with the stage and has been performing ever since.
At 16 years old, she moved to Paris, where she studied medieval poetry at the Sorbonne University during the day, and performed as an actress and Gypsy singer in some of the most renowned cabarets and theaters in France, including the Comedie Francaise. Born in Provence, South of France, into a family of violinists, Adrien Chevalier began his musical education at the Avignon Classical Conservatory, where he studied for 12 years before moving to Paris: He created Pad Brapad, a musical ensemble specializing in Balkan folklore, with whom he performed all over Europe, participating in the most renowned Word Music festivals.
Adrien is currently preparing his first solo album with compositions inspired by Gypsy Jazz, Tango and Eastern European folklore. The delicate voice and swing phrasing of Tatiana Eva-Marie brings the zazou element to the mix: The zazous were young Parisians obsessed with American swing: This element is also present in the music of Avalon Jazz Band, with a sound palette of Gypsy, Klezmer and Balkan inspiration.
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Within a few months the band had started taking engagements and has remained a popular band in the northwest ever since.