This year’s Bluesfest smash, the Hot club – as the name suggests – is an amalgam of western swing, country, folk and hot gypsy jazz. There are only three of them, but their dynamics would keep a musicologist busy. Each member sings as well as plays an instrument. Elana James (fiddle) has toured alongside bob Dylan, and her songwriting, particularly on Reunion, is tasteful and stylish, while guitarist Whit Smith trades off hot licks against his own voice, and bassist Erwin James holds down the arrangements with real style. A hot club indeed, and one I’d join immediately.
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