Sep 3, 2010

Friday Music Post: Gypsy Yodel

Back in the '90s I got into a great Texas band called Cafe Noir, the only gypsy jazz/Texas swing band I had heard (or have heard of since). All their records are pretty great, but for two magical albums in the middle of their career, Window to the Sea and The Waltz King, they teamed with an extraordinary yodeler/vocalist named Randy Erwin. The result resembled what you might hear if Django Reinhardt and Jimmie Rodgers had formed a band--except, as this audio clip shows, Erwin is also an expert crooner. (I was at this show!)

These videos have a pretty random bunch of non-vocal samples of Cafe Noir's music. And this is Randy doing his shtick for kids. For one brief shining moment, though, at the height of their powers, the band put their skills together to come up with such unclassifiable amazements as these:

As well as out-of-the-blue classical arrangements like this transcendent bit of Stravinsky:

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