A little Gypsy jazz for everyone in this Battle of the Bands!

“Swing Gitan” is a tune that’s alternately attributed to Django Reinhardt and to “traditional.” Whichever it was, it’s a fine example of the “Gypsy jazz” style made popular by Django and the Quintette du Hot Club de France and kept alive by artists such as our combatants today.

CONTESTANT #1: The Ghost Notes are a Greek band whose current members are Jim Politis (lead guitar), Vasilis Antonopoulos (rhythm guitar), Sergio Chrissovitsanos (violin), and Dimitris Tsekouras (bass). Their website tells us they were founded in 2012. This performance, with a couple of personnel differences, was done to demonstrate Rm Acoustic pickups.

CONTESTANT #2: Bireli Lagrene was seen at an early age as the heir apparent to Django as the premier Gypsy jazz guitarist, a reputation that was only slightly altered by his release of 1988’s Foreign Affairs, on which he introduced electric guitar and effects pedals. Traditionalists were horrified, but it was a fantastic album. There’s some debate whether Bireli is actually on this track, but I’m going by what the person who posted it said.

Now, it’s time to vote…

Whose version of “Swing Gitan” did you like better? They’re very similar, except for the improvisations, I realize, but whose did it for you? Please vote in the comments below and share a little about why you chose that one, if you dare care to.

Then, how’s about visiting some of the other blogs who might be doing battles as well?

Tossing It Out
Far Away Series *
StMcC Presents Battle of the Bands *
Your Daily Dose
Mike’s Ramblings
Curious as a Cathy
DC Relief – Battle of the Bands
Book Lover
Alex J. Cavanaugh
Shady Dell Music & Memories
Debbie D. at The Doglady’s Den
Angels Bark
Jingle Jangle Jungle
Janie Junebug Righting and Editing
Cherdo on the Flipside
Holli’s Hoots ‘n’ Hollers
J. A. Scott
Quiet Laughter

* Check these blogs for further updates to this list!

I’ll be announcing the winner of today’s Battle next Wednesday, June 8, so you have up until then to vote.

Best of luck to our contestants!

13 thoughts on “BATTLE OF THE BANDS: “Swing Gitan”

  1. Honestly, I cannot choose one over the other. I have never abstained in a battle before, but I’ve never been at such a complete loss before. I have no idea how to choose. They both are terrific.


  2. Oh wow….both are great but I have to give it to Bireli just for his sheer artistry and quickness. It might be a bit too quick to just listen to but I have to give it to his style and how great he is with the guitar


  3. I like Ghost Notes version best. I love the electric violin and a cello always fascinates me. 🙂

    Nice battle John.

    Michele at Angels Bark


  4. Oh, I liked this song. Such swing.
    Both versions were played very well, but I felt the second was played too fast. I hate that kind of style. Personally, I don’t think they have a ghost of a chance of winning.
    Please give my vote to the Ghost Notes.


  5. Great musicianship, and this kinda stuffs can really get my toes tapping.

    Like everyone else here, I prefer the slightly slower tempo of THE GHOST NOTES.

    Good Battle, John.

    ~ D-FensDogG
    ‘Loyal American Underground’


  6. Hey John! CONTESTANT #1: The Ghost Notes, get my vote.
    You know, I didn’t realize I knew the song until the Ghost Notes picked up their pace. Great swing sound!


  7. Wow, this is really something different! I loved The Ghost Notes and they are getting my vote today — however, both were awesome today, John! Thanks!


  8. Both contenders were enjoyable.

    I’m guessing Bireli Lagrene only had a very limited time to perform their set, so they played their songs at double speed so they could include more songs in their performance. But, boy… I sure felt tired from trying to keep up with them.

    I much prefer the slower tempo of Ghost Notes, please give my vote to them.

    Jingle Jangle Jungle


  9. One of these is just about as good as the other with a lot of virtuosity shown on the second version–just about good as hot jazz can be. But for my listening enjoyment I have a greater inclination toward The Ghost Notes. I guess it’s the milder approach they take to the song–less frantic than the competitor.

    My vote is for Ghost Notes.

    Arlee Bird
    A to Z Challenge Co-host
    Tossing It Out


Comments are closed.