Presented with The Midwest Gypsy Swing Fest

Colorado Gypsy Jazz Festival

ft. Harmonious Wail, Gonzalo Bergara Trio, Aaron Walker

Saturday, April 29, 2017
8:00 PM
Doors Open at 7:00 PM

Daniels Hall

71 E. Yale Ave., Denver, CO 80210  

Event Ended

Featured Artist #1


Colorado Gypsy Jazz Festival

The Colorado Gypsy Jazz Fest is pleased to announce a partnership with The Midwest Gypsy Swing Fest which has been bringing Carnegie Hall level artists to the midwest for 16 years. The Midwest Gypsy Swing Fest is beginning its spring 2017 tour at the annual Colorado Gypsy Jazz Fest at Swallow Hill on April 29 and 30.

Saturday evening performances will include a set of Gypsy Jazz music by local Denver favorite Aaron Walker Presents the Colorado Gypsy Jazz Consortium, followed by a set from Harmonious Wail and The Gonzalo Bergara Trio. The evening wraps up with a monster djam - every one on hand & onstage for a rousing finale.

Sunday April 30 bring a series of gypsy jazz workshops - all levels are welcomed. beginning gypsy jazz/ How I learned by Gonzalo Bergara, Mandolin in Gypsy Jazz - from bluegrass to Gypsy Jazz, vocals in Gypsy Jazz, double bass basics and improv tips …..

Sunday afternoon / evening the Colorado Gypsy Jazz Fest presents an all local show - special guest galore!


Featured Artist #2


Harmonious Wail

Smoldering vocals laced among the jazzy mandolin and guitar; an infectious blend of continental jazz, swing, gypsy music and melodic vocals …how DOES one describe the sound of Harmonious Wail? The Wail has caught numerous listeners by total surprise during its more than 20-year history. Of all the venues and stages that these 'NPR regulars' have graced, it's the PAC's, festivals and showcase clubs that bring the most enthusiastic audience response!

Sims Delaney-Potthoff - Mandolin, Vocals

Sims Delaney-Potthoff, Harmonious Wail's founder, leader and mandolinist, credits Jethro Burns with the band's unique, enticing style of mandolin-driven gypsy-jazz. Sims studied for seven years with Burns, the legendary jazz mandolinist, laying the foundation for Harmonious Wail's acoustic string sound. He furthered his studies with Matt Glaser at Boston's Berklee College of Music, honing his skills while immersing himself in the “gypsy" music of Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli (Lester Young, Charlie Parker, Bireli Lagrene, Duane Allman, David Grisman, and Louis Armstrong are also on his list of musical heroes). Sims also plays a 1937 Gibson Tenor Guitar (tuned as an octave mandolin), sings, writes and arranges for the Wail. He founded the group in 1987.

Maggie Delaney-Potthoff - Vocals, Percussion

Vocalist Maggie Delaney-Potthoff is a captivating performer. Equally at home scatting over a bebop tune, soaring on a solo, or blending with the Wail's tight vocal harmonies, she delivers both powerhouse tunes and ballads with confidence and ease. Her sensual, sinuous movements (a product of her background in dance and theatre) and her use of a cardboard box played with brushes as a drum add to the charm she exudes onstage.

Jeffo Weiss - Bass

Jeff Weiss, recent graduate of UW-Madison's School of Music, is already a master bassist with dazzling artistic prowess. Awarded the 2012 Madison Area Music Award for best bassist of the year, Jeff brings to the Wail a mesmerizing technical facility on the fretboard, a sophisticated and versatile style, and a powerful ability to create musical ambiance and rapport. Jeff studied under Richard Davis for five years and was principle bassist for UW-Madison's Symphony Orchestra. Jeff's music reflects a broad application of classical and jazz influences.

Featured Artist #3


Gonzalo Bergara Trio

Virtuoso composer and lead guitarist Gonzalo Bergara mixes a cascade of arpeggios with the sounds of Paris and his native Argentina, forging his own style of progressive Gypsy Jazz. His music exists in a way that very little music does. He has lavished such care on every phrase, built each arrangement with such lapidary precision and pared away anything extraneous.

Bergara began playing professionally at age 16 in Buenos Aires. By 17 he was already fronting his own blues trio on National Television. In 2000, at age 19, he arrived in America. He's toured worldwide with John Jorgensen Quintet, as well as performing and recording with hundreds of artists including Tim Hausser from Manhattan Transfer, Sylvie Vartan, Dan Hicks and The Hot Licks and Howard Alden. Gonzalo's touring resume covers Croatia, Canada, Italy, France, Germany, Hungary, Argentina, Brazil, England, Scotland and the United States.

Featured Artist #4


​Aaron Walker Presents the Colorado Consortium

Aaron Walker began playing gypsy jazz by chance when he came across a super clearanced gypsy jazz guitar at Guitar Center. His wife had no idea what she was in for. Since then he has hit the ground running performing, touring, and recording with Joscho Stephan, Bjorn Thoroddsen, Gonzalo Bergara, Robin Nolan, Richard Smith, Olli Soikelli, Jason Anick, Ben Powell, Greta Salome and many others. Aaron feels that gypsy jazz is the best vehicle to express music that is simultaneously thoughtful and deep, as well as tongue in cheek and deliciously sarcastic. His goal is to leave the audience thinking "I don't know what the hell that was but I liked it."

Michael Isabell found himself newly inspired by the music of Louis Armstrong, Django Reinhardt, and other gypsy jazz musicians. Immersing himself in understanding not only a new style of guitar, more importantly, a more diverse and effective way to learn and teach. He has attended Master Classes in Reykjavik, Iceland to study with international Gypsy Jazz guitarist and teacher, Robin Nolan and would later go on to perform and do radio performances with Robin. "My approach has to be as diverse as my students. Truly passionate about the guitar, Michael can also be seen and heard in his gypsy inspired group Mikey & The Pikeys, as well as being heavily involved in gypsyjazzdenver.com.

David Williams is an Emmy winning songwriter (for his work with PBS), cartoonist, writer, multi-instrumentalist, and professor. His musical influences include everything from gypsy jazz to delta blues, bluegrass and folk. As a singer-songwriter, he is known for his way with words and melodies, which conjure up the American musical landscape. David has spent decades studying the passionate guitar work of the famed gypsy swing instrumentalist, Django Reinhardt, and his band, DECO DJANGO, specializes in this infectious music from the 1930s. In the past, David has also recorded and performed with people such as Greg Brown, and he also studied and performed with the great mandolinist Jethro Burns, of Homer and Jethro fame. In addition, David has played at many of the large folk music festivals in North America, such as Vancouver and Winnipeg, where he has been recognized as both a songwriter and instrumentalist.

Laurie Dunklee has been a staple violinist in the Denver Gypsy Jazz scene since 2005. Her group with husband Ken Lutes has been a favorite for all types of gypsy and French themed festivals and events. Inspired by the music of violinists such as Stephane Grappelli, Tim Kliphuis and Florin Niculescu Laurie strives for the sophisticated yet playful and exciting sound that so characterizes Gypsy Swing.

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