Hot Club of Cowtown and the Western Flyers Feat. Katie Glassman
Hot Club of Cowtown
The Western Flyers
feat. Katie Glassman
Hot Club of Cowtown
Since 1998, the Western swing-gypsy jazz trio Hot Club of Cowtown has traveled the world bringing their own brand of magical musical chemistry to audiences far and wide. Along with Elana James, guitarist Whit Smith and bassist Jake Erwin are equal partners in this original marriage of gypsy-jazz-inspired by the music of Django Reinhardt — which accounts for the “Hot Club” portion of their name — with the hoedowns, traditional tunes, and Western swing-inspired music of Bob Wills and the Texas Playboys, represented in the “Cowtown” of their name. They have created a legacy of the preservation of musical traditions that have often been overlooked by the mainstream and alternative music worlds. Even Americana and roots enthusiasts have only scratched surface of the multitude of musicians, past and present, who continue to inspire the Hot Club of Cowtown.
“This music may be more prevalent now than fifteen years ago,” says James. “I don’t think as much of this was going on when we first got together–the seamless blending of Western swing tunes and hot jazz standards a la Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grapelli.” While the merging of gypsy jazz with Western swing sounds natural when listening to Hot Club of Cowtown, in the beginning the fusion of the two styles seemed more unorthodox than it does now. “We just have always listened to old recordings and get inspired by that endless trove of astonishing performances. Mixing these genres together has always just been such a natural fit. Over the years other ‘hot club’ bands come and go but I guess generally we may be the most visible touring Western swing power trio out there.”
The band has a long list of accomplishments since their first album, Swingin’ Stampede, first appeared in 1998 on HighTone records. Most notably, they are marking their 20th anniversary during the 2017-2018 touring season. They have released nine studio albums and they are among the youngest members ever to have been inducted inot the Texas Western Swing Hall of Fame. A considerable accomplishment for a band that have migrated their way from New England and the Midwest by way of New York City. They have most recently been named Western Swing Group of the year in 2015 at the Ameripolitan Music Awards (a new genre created by Dale Watson to recognize roots-influenced bands). In 2015 James won for Western Swing Female as well. The band has also represented the U.S. State Department as Musical Ambassadors over the past several years to places as diverse as Azerbaijan, Algeria, Armenia, the Republic of Georgia, and the Sultanate of Oman. Their festival appearances have been as diverse as they’ve been numerous including jazz, bluegrass and country festivals throughout the UK, Europe, Japan, Australia and North America.
The Western Flyers
The Western Flyers are churning out true blue vintage country, cowboy songs, electrifying old-time fiddle tunes, hot jazz & classic Western swing and when you hear it, you'll know there's no mistaking the brand. Blending tradition with musical innovation, the trio is a singular musical experience; a fresh take on a venerable American art performed by three acoustic virtuosos.
Internationally-renowned guitar master Joey McKenzie drives the train with his powerful rhythm, reigning 3-time US National Swing Fiddle champion and Denver, Colorado native Katie Glassman’s improvisation astounds, and world-class upright bassist Gavin Kelso adds fuel to the fire.
In 2017, The Western Flyers were honored to receive recognition for their contributions to traditional American music. The year started with a bang by being presented the coveted Ameripolitan Award for "Best Western Swing Group”. The trio was also honored to bring home the "Western Swing Album of the Year" award (for their debut album "Wild Blue Yonder” from both the Academy of Western Artists and the Western Music Association, and Katie was on cloud nine to be crowned "Female Western Swing Vocalist of the Year" by the Academy of Western Artists.
While the trio is one of the newest bands to glide on the scene in years, the musicians are seasoned pros and they are a band in full swing, as 2018 finds performance across the US and Australia. Equally at ease on the concert stage, music festivals and venues, of all shapes and sizes, the Flyers' appeal to a diverse cross section of enthusiastic music fans young and old.
"I love The Western Flyers. When I listen to them play I know that I am in the presence of modern masters in motion.” - Marty Stuart
“Together they perform with a brilliance and panache that will draw in any fans of traditional American string music.” - Bluegrass Today
“Somewhere, Bob Wills is smiling” - No Depression