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Patrick Saussois

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Born: September 4, 1953    Primary Instrument: Guitar

The French Band Alma Sinti will be touring North America August 26 -September 14, 2004.

I stand at the forefront of Jazz Manouche. As a musician he is one of the few able to navigate between styles and genres, whether it's playing bebop with Richie Cole, musette with Jo Privat or jazz Manouche with my own band, Alma Sinti, never letting one style bleed into the other and always maintaining my own identity. It is with the latter group that I has risen above the rest of my contemporaries. Alma Sinti uses Jazz Manouche as a base to incorporate swing, Latin, bop and valse Manouche and musette all without losing their unique guitar/accordion driven sound and all supported with “le pompe”, the Manouche style of rhythm guitar that gives the music its unique flavor. A gifted and prolific composer and improviser par excellence whose originals “Jojo Swing” and “Just One for Babik” have become standards in the jazz Manouche lexicon. I am at the top of a very short list of Jazz Manouche's most important and respected players. My record company, Djaz Records has released a slew of acclaimed CD's highlighting some of today's finest artists including Dorado and Tchavolo Schmitt and Dino Mehrstein. They swing- three guitarists, acoustic bassist, and button accordionist - offer a heady mix of tzigane (music in the gypsy style), musette (post-1910, accordion-driven music played for public balls), and jazz associated with Belgian gypsy guitarist Django Reinhardt , Stephan Grappelli and the Quintette du Hot Club de France during the '30s and '40s. I am perhaps best known for my work with accordionists, having in the past accompanied the late great accordion legend Jo Privat for years, and later he has collaborated with other fine players of piano des bretelles, like Jean-Claude Laudat and Daniel Colin. My records with the group Alma Sinti - released by my own record company, Djaz - constitute an unbelievably beautiful mix of swing standards, musette waltzes, French chansons and original compositions. I play my guitar in the left handed position with strings upside down, but although it looks awkward, it sounds great: my distinctive playing style is very relaxed and melodic...
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