A La Mode is a Kansas City hot jazz ensemble led by guitarist Clayton DeLong and vocalist Jesica “Baby J” Poell, with performances this weekend.
3 reasons we're listening to A La Mode this week:
1. A La Mode revives the European Gypsy jazz style associated with Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli. Reviewing their new album C’est Si Bon earlier this month, KCUR's Mike Warren suggested that the ensemble “keeps a pre-World War II genre relevant.” (Warren noted that Victor and Penny and the Hot Club of Kansas City are among the additional locally based groups that perform hot jazz.)
2. C’est Si Bon features contributions from prominent Kansas City musicians including violinists Marvin Gruenbaum and Adam Galblum, pianist Michael Pagán and percussionist Miguel “Mambo” DeLeon.
3. A La Mode's lively reading of hot jazz standards like "Diga Diga Doo" are meant for dancing.
Bill Brownlee’s writing appears weekly in The Kansas City Star and Ink magazine. He blogs about Kansas City’s jazz scene at Plastic Sax.