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Jazz of Django, and Grappelli

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By Nancy Hyndman

Who: Van Django

Where: Brackendale Art Gallery

When: Sunday, Dec. 2, 8 p.m.

In an unusual partnership of modern and retro ’40s jazz, Van Django bring you an all strings celebration of Django Reinhardt and Stephan Grappelli.

Cam Wilson (violin), Budge Schacte (guitar), Finn Manniche (guitar) and David Brown (bass) developed the show in partnership with producer Ken Mooney, who has presented 350 Vancouver Sun Community Concert Series performances over the past four years.

Initially Van Django was a songwriting kernel from Wilson.

"The beginning for the band was really when Cam Wilson wrote and recorded the theme song for the CBC radio show In Concert, bringing in additional musicians," says Mooney.

The partnership formed – "a hot new quartet with a Gypsy twist" – hasn’t skipped a beat, performing original compositions by members of the band as well as covers.

Previously, Manniche had partnered with Wilson on several projects, in addition to playing on CDs with the Paperboys, Nice to Luv You’s 54/40, and the Armadillo String Quartet.

Schacte has performed with Long John Baldry, Kenny Coleman, and Gypsalero, while he can also be heard on albums with Tango Paradiso and Ache Brazil.

Brown and Wilson both play with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, with Wilson also known for his Celtic performances with the band Mad Pudding. Wilson has also recorded with Raffee, political maestros Spirit of the West, and did the soundtrack to television’s Lonesome Dove series.

Brown’s credits include playing "house/pop bass" for unpredictable Maritimer Ashley MacIsaac. He performs with the Vancouver New Music Ensemble and teaches at UBC, Kwantlen College and Capilano College, among other educational institutions exploring music and music theory.

Van Django has played Vancouver’s du Maurier International Jazz Festival, the Quadra Island Concert Series and the Wall Centre and Harbourfront music series in Vancouver.

This Sunday’s performance will be recorded by Michael Juk’s crew with CBC Radio 2, as part of their West Coast Performance series, which will be aired at a later date.

Tickets for the concert at BAG are $10, available from the Brackendale Art Gallery, Mostly Books in Squamish, or at the door.

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