We have many great local swing and early jazz bands in Asheville! Here are some of our regulars…
The Low-Down Sires are dedicated to the lost sounds of early jazz, inspired by the compositions and arrangements of Joe “King” Oliver, Edward “Kid” Ory, Jelly Roll Morton, and other giants from the storied origins of the art form.
Their raucous style predates the smoother sounds of big band swing and the intellectualism of modern jazz and transports you to the streets of New Orleans and the barrelhouses of early 20th century Mississippi river towns. Their performance style is at once hard hitting and intimate, fitting in easily well at bars, back-porches, swing dances, and street corners.
In addition to their regular circuit of local swing dances, club appearances, and private parties, they’ve had the pleasure of performing for Stompology Authentic Jazz Dance Weekend, Lindy Exchanges in Knoxville, TN, Charleston, SC, Atlanta, GA, and Cincinnati, OH, dance workshop events in Columbia, SC and Huntsville, AL, and will be featured in the upcoming jazz-inspired feature film SwingX.
Based in Asheville, North Carolina, One Leg Up performs a vibrant mixture of upbeat Gypsy Jazz, Latin, Swing and original jazz compositions and is a favorite of club, concert, and festival stages throughout the southeastern United States. One Leg Up—John Stineman (guitar, vocals), Jim Tanner (Guitar), Zack Page (bass), Mike Guzalak (Clarinet, Sax) and Steve Trismen (violin, vocals)—formed in 2003 as a “String Swing” band in the style of famed French gypsy guitarist Django Reinhardt.
Propelled by their excellent self-produced debut recording “Gypsy Blue,” they soon won critical acclaim for their “hot club” prowess and were tapped to back up award-winning Spanish guitarist Pere Soto on some of his 2005 U.S. tour dates. Also in 2005, One Leg Up performed at a concert and book show with Michael Dregni, author of Django: The Life and Music of a Gypsy Legend. Over the years, One Leg Up has broadened its repertoire to include fresh arrangements of Django classics, vocal harmonies, original compositions, and innovative adaptations of classic jazz numbers in the French “hot club” and American “big band” styles.
Now more than just a Django band, their latest recording “Pere La Chaise” is a music mix that is danceable and accessible. One Leg Up continues to attract a growing, varied, and enthusiastic fan base with music that always swings.
In this, Mick Glasgow’s hot swingin’ side-project, Mick leads the band on vocals and cornet, with a set list selected from his favorite old and rare New Orleans traditional jazz tunes.
The Jason DeCristofaro Quartet is led by xylophonist Jason DeCristofaro, and also features guitarist Annie Erbsen, bassist Kevin Kehrberg, and local horn players as guests. The group performs standards, Hot Jazz, and Swing from the 1910’s through the 1940’s.
The Rhythm Serenaders is classic small-group swing at it’s finest. The six piece combo is a hard-swinging dedication to the style and arrangements of the mid-to-late 1940′s, paying homage to the small groups of Count Basie, Duke Ellington, Lionel Hampton, Roy Eldridge, Illinois Jacquet, Chu Berry, and other artists that mastered the small group sound, just as Big Band swing was waning in popularity, but before the full-on emergence of Bebop and modern jazz.
Bandleader Michael Gamble’s 10+ years of work in every aspect of the global swing dance community informs the band’s repertoire and taste. The music will carry a dance floor all night long, but is just as comfortable in bars, clubs, and setting a classy tone for a private event. Michael Gamble and his Rhythm Serenaders embody the joy and infectious energy of mid-20th century American Jazz!
With a wide repertoire ranging from gypsy jazz to early ragtime pop to New Orleans blues, they play gems from every era of early jazz. Featuring Sparrow Pants on vocals and accordion, Keith J. Smith on guitar, and the marvelous Je Widenhouse on cornet, this new band on the block is ready to move your feet.