Andrew London has been touring regularly throughout New Zealand for the past couple of decades, popping up at jazz, folk and arts festivals with his quirky, satirical songs, which poke a bit of a stick at Kiwi attitudes and habits. He has presented his repertoire under various guises here in his home town – the Hot Club Sandwich Trio, his collaboration with James Cameron and Wayne Mason in the Cattlestops, and the Too Many Chiefs project adding Laura Collins and Rob Joass.
But whatever the format he employs, the repertoire grooves around his melodies and harmonies and entertaining chatter, with his bass-playing partner Kirsten always there by his side.
On this visit to Whanganui, the couple will be accompanied by Wayne Mason playing his wonderful boogie-woogie-style piano and local drum hero Michael Franklin-Browne. Andrew calls the outfit the Swing Voters, and this is how he describes it:
"The Swing Voters play a lot of my own original songs culled from the Hot Club Sandwich and Cattlestops repertoire, also some newer ones - some you'd call blues, some rock'n'roll and some country-rock or western swing, and I mix them up with our favourite jazz and swing standards from artists like Louis Jordan, Nat King Cole, Louis Prima and the like. We know they're old songs - but they don't feel old when we play them ... and nor do I.
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"We love setting up an unrelenting swing groove and seeing how people just can't help themselves from moving. This was the pop music of the 40s when the big bands were rocking huge dance halls in the northern USA, Bob Wills & the like were playing the same repertoire in the south, albeit with fiddles and guitars rather than trumpets and saxophones, and Grappelli and Reinhardt were the toast of Europe with their all-string Quintette du Hot Club de France. It was infectious stuff then and we think it still is."
Andrew London & the Swing Voters perform at the Whanganui Jazz Club's monthly meeting on Sunday, July 3, at the St John's Club, 158 Glasgow St. The restaurant serves dinners and snacks from 5.30pm, with the music kicking off at 6.30pm. General admission is $25, while Jazz Club Members pay $15. Memberships are available at the door.