“Absolutely brilliant performers and last year’s festival favourites!”
The heartfelt wail of the blues; the sultry heat of the campfire; the crazy swirl of the bal musette,
all fused together with virtuosity and passion in the melting pot of 1930’s Paris: the result was gypsy jazz.
Now ‘LA VIE EN ROSE’ play this exuberant, toe-tapping music with a swing and joie-de-vivre as fresh today
as when Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli first conjured it from the back streets of Pigalle.
' L A V I E E N R O S E ' . . . five musicians with wide-ranging individual backgrounds in classical music, traditional jazz, rock, blues, country, ragtime and roots, pulled together by the shared pleasure of gypsy jazz and hot swing.
We play a wide variety of venues and events, at parties and palaces, for festivals and family-days,
at weddings .......and funerals! Our gigs have included top national jazz festivals like Upton Jazz and Jazz Jurassica,
regional festivals like 'Vibraphonic', 'Respect', 'Acoustica' and 'Nourish'; for regular south-west events like 'Jazz on the Quay', The Contemporary Craft Festival and Velo Vintage; and top-flight jazz clubs like Swansea Jazzland.
In 2018 we played for the third year running at The Royal Albert Hall's 'Verdi Italian Kitchen' at their special Valentine's Day celebration and we have gigged other well-respected London music venues such as The Gladstone Arms
and The Magic Garden.
As well as numerous events, festivals and jazz clubs we also play for all kinds of private functions, weddings,
parties and house-concerts.
Aside from performance we have for the last few years hosted a monthly gypsy jazz session' in Exeter. This is to encourage players of all instruments, abilities and backgrounds to get together informally and become immersed in gypsy jazz and swing. In keeping with our outlook on music-making it's non-judgemental and highly supportive. (See our 'LIVE DATES' page and Facebook 'Gypsy Jazz Sessions Exeter' for information.) N.B. THIS IS ON HOLD WHILE WE SEARCH FOR A NEW REGULAR VENUE.
"Great night with the super talented La Vie en Rose”
Tiverton Community Arts Theatre (TCAT)
David Jones (gtr) learned piano from the age of 6, guitar from 11, has played as lead guitarist in rock bands, works
extensively in musical theatre, and teaches at schools and the Exeter Academy of Music & Sound. Having discovered
gypsy jazz in his teenage years he has focused on this style to become one of the UK's finest players. He has performed
alongside the likes of top guitarists such as Lollo Meier and Bertrand Le Guillou, and at events such as the March
Manouche Festival. He is endorsed by JWC Guitars.
Rebecca Willson (vln) plays violin, viola and piano, and has a B.A. in Music Performance, and an M.A. in 21st Century Music. Her varied projects include playing solo piano concerts, working as a member of The Obligato String Quartet, through the musical spectrum to hillbilly and western swing bands. She has studied the gypsy jazz violin technique with Tim Kliphuis, and teaches the Kodály Musical Education Approach.
Laurie Light (gtr) Is the only member of the band who was around while Django was still alive! A love of swing and
jazz stemmed from listening to Radio Luxembourg and AFN as a youngster, and a father who crooned in the working-
men's clubs of the West Midlands. Learning guitar as a young teenager he was inspired by first hearing Big Bill Broonzy
and over the years he has played and sung a repertoire of roots, blues, hokum and western swing.
Yann Mahdjoub (d/b) has a worthy reputation for his upright bass playing with the original Hot String Duo. He recorded 3 albums on the renowned Western Star label with The Bonneville Barons and has toured and released an acclaimed album with The Zazou Cowboys . His background in hillbilly and western swing led naturally towards gypsy jazz and the influences are clearly heard in his strong rythymical and driving playing style.
Nick White (clt) studied at Worcester College Oxford, and the Guildhall School of Music & Drama under the tutorship of Thea King, Roy Jowitt and Colin Lawson. He has had a varied career with diverse groups including Northern Ballet Theatre Orchestra, The Pasadena Roof Orchestra, Zippo’s Circus Band and the Fabulous Good Time Party Boys. He works extensively as an arranger and teacher and is currently lead alto saxophonist with the Big Chris Barber Band.
Rebecca, David and Nick are full-time professional musicians and music teachers, available for private tuition, orchestral and musical theatre work, and are involved in a wide range of other music projects. Please contact through our Gmail or Facebook page.
“We only get to book La Vie En Rose a few times a year so this is a rare treat.
This lot are magnificent.”
Danny Gladstone, 'The Glad', London SE1.