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I thought it might be interesting to start a thread about favourite players who frustratingly have done some amazing stuff but not enough of it or keep a low profile. There are three that stick in my mind.
Number three on my list is, surprisingly, Olli Soikeli. Yes there are plenty of albums and youtube performances etc but when it come to instructional material, there is not a lot. He does a couple of licks on Gypsy academy (which I highly recommend btw) and some stuff with JTC. The JTC format is not the easiest to use. Yet what you do get I have found to be tantalisingly amazing. It would be so cool if there were 2 or 3 lessons on, say, DC music.
Number two is Lollo Meier. First time I saw him he was playing at the cafe in Samoraeu years ago and I was blown away by his sound. We had a chat about picks. There weren't a lot of gypsy picks about back then and he was impressed with my Wegen. He was using a piece of tortoise shell that he'd nearly worn to nothing.
Number one for me is pretty special. Let me set the scene! It was 2002 I's just got interested in Django, I'd never really heard of Gypsy Jazz but I was at Uni and I'd decided to write my honours dissertation on Django. I'd heard about this Django festival in France so off I go with the girlfriend of the moment in tow. After a gruelling journey across France not really knowing where we were going or what we'd find when we got there, we stepped off the train at fontainebleau and were hit by this fantastic green smell. We eventually found our way to the island, pretty exhausted. We had no proper idea where we were sleeping that night and all we had for tea was two french sticks and a jar of Nutella. We'd never heard of Samoreau and petite Barbeau was closed in those days. She thought we'd get a room at the country club... I suspected we'd end up under a tree on the river bank.
But it was a beautiful place to be and the sun was shining. We dropped our luggage and sat down in front of the main stage to catch our breath.
And onto the stage came Dino Mehrstein and broke into Dinology from his album Point De Deport.
I think it was one of the happiest moments of my life! He only recorded two albums to my knowledge. Both of which I've never stopped listening to. I so wish there was a lot more.