Hot Club of Cowtown

Hot Club of Cowtown members pose with guitar, fiddle and bass in front of a quirky rustic building.

Photo Credit

Dave Creaney

Country music that swings? Jazz with a twang? This Austin-based trio walks the line between the Gypsy jazz of Django Reinhardt's Quintette du Hot Club de France and the western swing of Bob Wills & the Texas Playboys. —Greg Haymes, Albany (NY) Times Union

Fiddler Elana James, guitarist Whit Smith and bassist Jake Erwin lay it on the line with tight vintage harmonies, slapping bass, and sizzling fiddle and guitar. It's the sound of the 1930s and 40s, but with a thoroughly modern attitude.

Since its beginnings in the late 1990s, the Hot Club of Cowtown has always woven a combination of seemingly disparate styles together to its own magical effect, setting up camp “at that crossroads where country meets jazz and chases the blues away” (The Independent), remaining “conscious always that above all else, the music is for dancing and an old-fashioned good time” (New York Times). The band’s musical alchemy has been described as “another breathless journey in the Texas tardis” (The Times, London), while American Songwriter observed that “the excellent three players of this band could be doing anything but have chosen to honor the greats of jazz and swing with their sound.”