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March 2002

Frank Vignola
Blues for a Gypsy

Co-produced by mandolinist David Grisman, this disc features guitarist Vignola in an acoustic solo setting that acknowledges the influence of Gypsy guitar legend Django Reinhardt at nearly every step.

Vignola plays on a technically high level throughout, frequently throwing in everything but the kitchen sink. Cases in point include "Donna Lee" (interpreted in a Gypsy style), "Blues for a Gypsy" (frequently folkish in character) and the brief original "Train Ride" (impressive, but more of a technical exercise than a tune). And he both effectively sets a mood and directly salutes his mentor on the ballads "Fishing With Django" and Reinhardt's own "Manoir de Mes Reves."

Extremely versatile and flexible, Vignola can play in a variety of jazz styles. Here he has his Gypsy hat on, so the harmonic vocabulary and overall scope are relatively limited. Nevertheless, this music is something that acoustic guitar lovers, and Gypsy guitar aficionados in particular, can really sink their teeth into.

Originally published in March 2002
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