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Midwinter Midwest Gypsy Swing Fest 2018
Brink Lounge
Madison, WI
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Midwinter Midwest Gypsy Swing Fest 2018
Time again to warm up a cold February weekend with some smoking hot and passionate gypsy jazz.  Back once more to the Brink Lounge in Madison Wisconsin, Harmonious Wail presents and WORT welcomes The 2018 Midwinter Midwest Gypsy Swing Fest.

Harmonious Wail
Gonzalo Bergara
Alfonso Ponticelli and Swing Gitan
Don Stiernberg
Garden City Hot Club w/Steve Jones

Friday Feb. 2, 2018
Harmonious Wail
Garden City Hot Club w/Steve Jones
Gonzalo Bergara

Saturday Feb 3, 2018
Alfonso Ponticelli and Swing Gitan
Don Stiernberg
Harmonious Wail
Announcing Midwest Gypsy Swing Fest workshops !!!

On Saturday February 3 from 2 - 4 pm the following workshops are being offered - all at The Brinklounge Madison ;

Gonzalo Bergara - a chance to learn from a true master. Gonzalo's instructional book/CD is called "How I Learned" - says it all.

Don Stiernberg - undisputed master of jazz mandolin. Don was Jethro Burns' right hand man and teaches at workshops all over the world. A wonderful guy and a great teacher - a must for any and all mando-enthusiasts!

Jack Soref -- Learning the style, with Jack Soref:
Workshop on Jazz Manouche improvisation and accompaniment - for beginners and intermediate players alike -all instruments welcome.

email sims@wail.com for details !!!
Don Stiernberg
While still in his teens, Don Stiernberg learned to play the mandolin from the innovative and influential virtuoso Jethro Burns. Jethro referred to Don as his graduate student, hired him to play in his band, and guided him to a career as a professional musician which has already lasted for decades.
A leading exponent of jazz mandolin style, Don has nine recording projects of his own and appears on many others by a variety of artists in all styles. The most recent of these is Good Numbers, a jazz CD by the trio. The numbers include standards, jazz tunes and one original. The trio includes two renowned Chicago jazz musicians. Guitarist Andy Brown is known for his brilliance with all facets of guitar playing in this style-accompaniment, blazing solo lines, and his own unique chordal style. Jim Cox is everyones favorite bass player, with performance and recording credentials ranging from Earl Hines to Judy Roberts to Marian McPartland to Rosemary Clooney and countless others. The trio has performed from Portland east to Portland west as well as overseas visits to festivals in Germany and Brazil. Their style might be described as swinging interpretations of accessible jazz material played acoustically on mandolin (and occasional vocal), guitar, and bass. Or in short Good Pickin on the Good Numbers.

Alfonso Ponticelli & Swing Gitan
Chicagos premier Gypsy-jazz band.
The music of Alfonso Ponticelli & Swing Gitan is a vibrant, upbeat and passionate blend of American Jazz, Gypsy jazz, Flamenco and world folk music threaded together through virtuostic improvisation. Composer and band leader Ponticelli invites some of Chicagos top talent for musical conversation and an always lively dose of some of the best spontaneous co-arranging, with top artists including the current lineup:
John Bany, bass; Eric Schneider, clarinet/sax; Steve Gibons, violin; Bob Rummage, drums; Rami Gabriel, oud/guitar; Alex Udvary, cimbalom
A multi-instrumentalist, Ponticelli won the 1994 U.S. National Mountain Dulcimer Championship and continues to perform solo mountain dulcimer and guitar. He has played both banjo and guitar with the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra and was invited to performsolo didgeridoo at the Chicago Symphony Center. Ponticelli has collaborated in Chicago with Arabic, Irish, bluegrass, Gypsy, Romanian and many other traditional folk musicians. Ponticelli has had the honor of performing at Chicagos Millennium Park on its opening night as well as at every major museum in Chicago.
Ponticelli is the 2009 recipient of the Leonardo da Vinci award for outstanding achievement in performing arts from Order Sons of Italy in America and holds a B.M. in Jazz Studies from DePaul University. Ponticelli has been to Cordoba, Spain (1994) to study with the great flamenco guitarists Rafael Riqueniand Manolo Sanlucar, New Mexico to study with Chuscales and Pedro Cortes and has had the great flamenco singer and guitarist Pansequito join his band for two years. He has performed at the Iridium in New York City where Les Paul invited Alfonso to play as a special guest with his trio.
Ponticelli shares his education and love of music by teaching workshops at many festivals, including 13 years at the Midwest Gypsy Swing Fest in Madison, Wisconsin. He introduced Gypsy jazz to Chicago in the 1990s, when he began teaching a weekly Django-style class at the renowned Old Town School of Folk Music, where he has taught for 16 years.
Ponticelli has shared his music at many prestigious festivals, including the Django Reinhardt festival in Samois, France, DjangoFest Northwest, Gypsy Jazz fests in New York City, Denver, CO., and extensively throughout the Midwest. Some of his students have joined his band and traveled to these fests performing with his band. Alfonso Ponticelli has collaborated with many Chicago institutions for 14 years to present the great culture of the Roma/Gypsy people through music with his annual Chicago Gypsy Jazz festival.
Steve Jones and Garden City HotClub
Steve Jones & The Garden City Hot Club is a hot club/early swing style group from Michigans upper peninsula. The group was formed by Steve after moving back from the east coast in early 2011, and started as a guitar duo with UP native, and hot guitarist Bob Hiltunen. The two added Scott McIntosh on bass later that year, and recorded their first CD Live at Root Notes. Since forming the group, they have had many variations including St. Louis pianist, Dan Furhmann, John Peiffer on natural horn from the Kennedy Center Opera House, University of Miami Naples concert master Glenn Basham on violin, and many others.
The GCHC has performed twice at the Midwest Gypsy Swing Festival, Bridge Street Live in Collinsville CT, Cliff Bells in Detroit, Jazz Central Festival in Central MI, countless other festivals and venues across the Midwest and east coast, and other special events.
The Garden City Hot Club is joined this year at MWGSF by two former members of The Hot Club of Detroit, Carl Cafagna (sax) and Shannon Wade (bass). Steve and Carl met at Birdland in NYC when the two were there for the annual Django Reinhardt Festival held there. Carl, then with The Hot Club of Detroit and Steve, then with Dan Levinson & The Djangophiles performing in the Village. Since meeting, Carl and Shannon have performed with Steve and Bob a number of times in the Detroit Metro area. Together they gel like they have played their whole lives together, and swing out hard!


Gonzalo Bergara
Born and raised in Buenos Aires Argentina, Gonzalo Bergara is recognized as one of the best Gypsy Jazz players of his generation. With 9 albums under his belt, and more than 100 shows a year, Gonzalo presents a mix of his own compositions and classics from the Gyspy Jazz repertoire.

One of the best guitar players in the universe
Charlie Baty

Gonzalo Bergara is a phenom in the truest sense of term. He proves beyond any doubt that the truth of the Blues is in the soul. He is tasteful, poignant and deeply moving in is his guitar work. Thank God here
Janiva Magness

The best thing that happened to Gypsy Jazz in the last 20 years
Samois Django Reinhardt Festival


Brink Lounge (View)
701 E. Washington Ave., Suite 105
Madison, WI 53703
United States



Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!


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