Mark Dobbin reports on Hot Club of Cambridge, the Elm Tree, Cambridge, June 2006

Local Cambridgeshire Artist
For violinist Iain Mann, it was the 1930s gypsy swing of Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grapelli that paved his way into playing jazz - and today Californian Iain plays in The Hot Club of Cambridge alongside guitarists Will Ballard, Chris Marriot and Colin Barrill and double-bass player John Trousdale, currently filling a summer residency at the Elm Tree.

For their latest show, Iain displayed great versatility on the violin for a first half that incorporated swing standards like After You've Gone and All of Me; there was good interplay too between violinist and skilful guitarist Colin Barrill. The band's clever balance of slower and foot-tapping faster numbers -- like Limehouse Blues, bringing up the interval - generated both Paris Hot Club atmosphere and rousing audience response.

The second half got off speedily with Django Reinhardt's Minor Blue, Barrill's guitar again impressing. Tempo dropped suitably for I'll See You In My Dreams, while John Trousdale's double- bass solo stood out on Sweet Georgia Brown.

It Don't Mean A Thing If It Ain't Got That Swing is a number guaranteed to get any audience going, especially when played gypsy jazz-style. Applause was hearty, and a most appreciative crowd cheered the band out on the lively Tchavdo Song.

On in a corner of Elm Street and Eden Street in Cambridge, the spirit of the great Django Reinhardt lives on.

2006 Copyright © Moving Tone Ltd.

Writer: Mark Dobbin