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Faux Frenchmen - Oblivion (2008)
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Faux Frenchmen - Oblivion (2008)

12-07-2014, 04:14
Music | Jazz

Faux Frenchmen - Oblivion (2008)

Artist: Faux Frenchmen
Title Of Album: Oblivion
Year Of Release: 2008
Label: Shake It Records
Genre: Jazz, Gypsy Swing
Quality: MP3 320 kbps
Total Time: 47:44
Total Size: 108 MB

The Faux Frenchmen are acoustic guitarists Brian Lovely and George Cunningham, acoustic bassist Don Aren, and violinist Paul Patterson. They’ve played Hot Club-driven gypsy jazz in and around Cincinnati and the Eastern and Midwestern U.S. since 2002.

Guitarist Django Reinhardt and violinist Stephane Grappelli fronted the Quintette of the Hot Club of France in and around Paris from 1934 to 1939, and constituted the first generation of European jazz musicians. The Hot Club blended backgrounds in traditional gypsy and European popular and classical music with the then-new sounds of American jazz artists like Duke Ellington, Fats Waller, Benny Goodman and Louis Armstrong to create a new musical genre, now often called “gypsy jazz.”

The Faux Frenchmen adapt the Hot Club’s instrumentation and style in forging their own re-Americanized take on gypsy jazz. Their three CD releases, Faux Frenchmen (2007), Oblivion (2008) and The Swing Shift (2010) bend the relationship between American and European jazz, utilizing elements of both to create a distinctive stylistic voice.

A mere eleven months after the release of their first eponymous CD, the Faux Frenchmen release their second disc, “Oblivion,” which highlights the band’s compositional talents.

The Frenchmen are bassist Don Aren, guitarists George Cunningham and Brian Lovely, and violinist Paul Patterson. Seven of “Oblivion’s” eleven titles are original compositions, and all band members contribute pieces to the project. Compositions are based on, but not chained to the style pioneered by Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli with the Hot Club of France during the 1930’s in and around Paris.

The Brian Lovely-produced disc features elements of gypsy jazz (Lovely’s “Little Baby Beck”), ‘30’s American and Euro-tinged jazz (Patterson’s “Chromatic Drag” and “Allee Royale,” Aren’s “Edna’s Knot”), and Raymond Scott-fueled cartoon music (Cunningham/ Patterson’s “The Opposite of a Nurse.”). Also featured are Argentinean tango composer Astor Piazzolla’s title cut and timeless jazz staples by Duke Ellington and others.

Critic’s Pick. “Pop genius Brian Lovely, roots maven George Cunningham, preeminent Jazz bassist Don Aren and peerless CSO violinist Paul Patterson all pretty much abandon everything they do regularly to make a gorgeous Gypsy Jazz noise here with the Faux Frenchmen. The quartet swings like crazy, mixing Django Reinhardt Jazz classicism with Raymond Scott whimsy to create a sound that can only be described as serious fun. The band’s second CD, Oblivion, is another mix of pop and jazz standards plus some excellent originals.”


1. Edna’s Knot
2. It Don’t Mean A Thing
3. The Opposite Of A Nurse
4. Chromatic Drag
5. Allee Royale
6. I Saw Stars
7. Little Baby Beck
8. Seigneur Terrasse
9. Eleventh Floor Stomp
10. Harry Lime Theme
11. Oblivion


Don Aren, double bass
George Cunningham, acoustic guitar
Brian Lovely,acoustic guitar
Paul Patterson, violin



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