Friday, June 29, 2012

The Hot Club of Nunaka's Gypsy Jazz

The Hot Club of Nunaka played gypsy jazz Thursday night at Out North's Black Box Theater.   This is part of the Anchorage Music Co-op, one of the many arts groups incubating over at Out North.

Derek Christianson, Karl Pasch,             Eric Rogers,              Nathan Levine,   Carter Bancroft

We enjoyed chronological tour starting in the 1920's and I thought about how much of what happens in a community is invisible to the people just passing through the neighborhood. (Though a door was open a bit so maybe some of the music drifted out.)

I also thought about the Klez-X, the klezmer group we heard in San Francisco in January.  One can't help but hear the connection between the gypsy and klez music.  The key thing missing last night was the accordion.  And Klez-X were all incredible musicians.  The kind that make performing music look easy.  Nunaka reminded me how hard it really is.  Although they were really good nearly all the time, there were points where, to my untrained ear, it didn't quite make it.  This is just a local group that I assume plays after work.  But they are so good, I want them to have some impresario take them under his wings and polish them up the few places they need it.

It's much easier to give a sense of the night by just playing the music, than talking about it, so here's a brief video sampler from the concert. Because of where I was sitting, Carter Bancroft was cut off for most of the video.  But at the end the person blocking my view left and you can see him on the right in the last clip.  And think about this like listening to a concert over the phone.  The sound on my tiny Canon Powershot is pretty good, but it can't do justice to music.

You can hear more, better quality samples at Hot Club of Nunaka's website.

By the way, Nunaka Valley is an Anchorage neighborhood with, generally, moderately priced houses, and not a place one would associate with hot gypsy music.  A band joke, I would assume.

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