Meet the band...
Who We Are
Emma Fisk (violin) has been playing hot club and gypsy jazz since she was a teenager when she soaked up classic Grappelli recordings and was lucky enough to meet the man himself after a performance at Sunderland Empire. For 15 years she toured and recorded with critically acclaimed Gypsy Jazz quartet Djangologie.
Emma has appeared as guest violinist at jazz festivals throughout the UK, including performances with the Remi Harris Trio, Keith Nichols, Tony Oreshko Trio, Spats Langham, Martin Wheatley and The Jazz Repertory Company. In 2018 she was nominated in the British Jazz Awards, one of only a handful of UK violinists to receive this recognition.
Hot Club du Nord is her chance to revisit the classic Hot Club repertoire - one of her earliest musical loves!
James Birkett (guitar) is one the country’s most acclaimed guitarists. He developed and led one of the UK’s first degree programmes in jazz and related music – which is now run at Sage Gateshead. He has a PhD in jazz improvisation and has two books of jazz guitar transcriptions published by International Music Publishers. James has worked with many major jazz soloists from the UK (incl. Guy Barker, Alan Barnes and Chris ‘Snake’ Davis) and the USA (incl. Peanuts Hucko, Kenny Davern and Scott Hamilton), and continues to perform with a variety of jazz ensembles, regularly undertaking concert, festival and broadcast work.
David Harris (guitar) was a founder member of Hot Club quartet Djangology - and performed with the band for c.10 years. He studied jazz guitar with Barney Kessel and once spent an afternoon jamming with Bert Weedon when he was touring with a young Bireli Lagrene. Dave also played with guitarist Teddy Judge who met and jammed with Django when he was in London in the 1940s. Most recently he met Nitcho Reinhardt, petit cousin du grand Django, in Mont-devant-Sassey, where he was playing a gig for 'Les Amis de l'Eglise de Mont'.
Bruce Rollo (double bass)
Bruce Rollo is one of the finest traditional jazz and swing bassists. A master of the supremely rhythmic and percussive "slap" style, his swinging, rhythmic style conjures the dance origins of the music.
Inspired at an early age by many of the bands that did not use drums making the bass the driving force in the rhythm section, he has played for many years with traditional jazz bands all over the UK and Europe, even jamming alongside Jimmy Rosenberg at the finale of the Riverboat Jazz Festival in Denmark.
Hot Club du Nord focus on the original repertoire of the Hot Club de France and take their inspiration from the swinging, musically inventive approach of Reinhardt & Grappelli. This repertoire consisted of instrumental versions of contemporary popular songs such as J'Attendrai/Tornerai, Si Tu Savais and Undecided; jazz standards of the 1920s and 30s - It Had to be You, Body & Soul, Ain't Misbehavin', Lady Be Good and Sweet Georgia Brown, and Reinhardt /Grappelli originals such as Minor Swing, Sweet Chorus, HCQ Strut, Nuages, Oriental Shuffle and Belleville.
While the repertoire is classic, the interpretations are fresh and inspired!
"Historic recording sessions and arrangements peppered Fisk’s informative introductions."