I flew home a couple of weekends ago to see one of the world’s foremost Django Reinhardt-inspired bands. Prodigiously talented Amati Schmidt, a mere 24-years old and already an accomplished and sought after musician both in France and the US, brought the Django All-Star Band to San Francisco with some of the best performers of the genre. The show was spectacular. I had a perfect seat right down front and was even able to meet and chat with the group after the performance. Amati is the youngster, but what talent! Pierre Blanchard on the violin is a wonder as is Ludovic Beier, the super accomplished accordionist/composer. I was blown away by the entire experience!
So many young musicians from the Roma community have profited from the doors opened by their hero and often blood relative, Django Reinhardt. Youngsters grew up learning to play like the “king” of French gypsy jazz, also known as jazz manouche. With the establishment of the yearly Django Reinhardt festival in Samois Sur Seine 50 years ago and other important festivals around the world, these talented musicians have had the chance to become known and celebrated worldwide.
As I returned to Puerto Vallarta on Monday, my heart was full of pride thinking of the exceptional young men and women who would be awaiting me in our community with their incredible music. It gave me great pleasure to know that many of these talented groups we will be showcasing in our up and coming first-ever Bahia World Music Festival on December 7 and 8 at Oscar’s Tequila Distillery on River Cuale Island.
The inspiration for the festival was our desire to show off our local talent to a broader public and establish a tradition of doing so every year, hopefully attracting an audience from outside Puerto Vallarta as well as our community. We are also excited to be sponsoring a competition for young local musicians under 18 years of age as part of the festival to encourage their growth and commitment.
To whet your appetite in the next few weeks, you will have the opportunity to see and hear a number of the groups that will perform at the festival in various venues around town. Feel free to visit my website with a calendar of many such performances. Coming soon are the intoxicating guitars of Media Luna, the fiery flamenco music of Tatewari, the incredible Mediterranean and jazz manouche of Moruno, and the inspired Brazilian jazz of Trem de Minas (see vallartasounds.com.) Media Luna, the astounding Gypsy Rumba/Latin Fusion band, will present an exceptional show as guests of Los Bambinos at the Tratorria Los Bambinos, Aguacate #314, on Saturday, November 23. Call for reservations for this magnificent dinner show. Their show is called Rumba on Fire and will feature “hot” and very danceable gypsy rumba music as only Media Luna can deliver. The show starts at 8:00 PM. Go early to enjoy the inspired dishes prepared by their talented chef Chimi. Also, on November 23, in La Cruz de Huanacaxle’s Tree House Bar, the fiery flamenco group Tatewari will celebrate their 13th anniversary with an extraordinary concert. Again this is a dinner show. Please call for reservations.
Make sure you pay a visit to our website: www.worldmusicfestival.mx for more information on the Bahia World Music Festival 2019, and to purchase tickets for our extraordinary two-day event.