Django Reinhardt and the Illustrated History of Gypsy Jazz

by Michael Dregni with Alain Antonietto and Anne Legrand
Contact: kathleen Cole, kathleen@speckpress.com

Denver, Colorado, October 6, 2006

It’s rare for an entire genre to be summed up by one single figure. Yet Django Reinhardt easily shines as the unequivocal definition of Gypsy jazz, a music that remains vibrant today.

Speck Press proudly announces the publication of Michael Dregni’s Django Reinhardt and the Illustrated History of Gypsy Jazz, a stylish collection of more than 400 exceptional images tenderly telling the story of Django Reinhardt and the greater world of Gypsy jazz.

Working in concert with Gypsy jazz aficionados Alain Antonietto and Anne Legrand, as well as Django’s grandsons, Dregni fastidiously unfolds Django’s story starting from his birth, running through the Paris Jazz Age of the 1920s, and ending with today’s worldwide renaissance of Gypsy jazz bands.
The stunning images include rare archival photographs, family portraits, collector-quality posters and programs, as well as modern images, guitars, era memorabilia, and paintings (one by Django himself). Running narrative weaves its way in and around the imagery, further playing out the legacy of Gypsies and their music. Author Michael Dregni masterfully creates the illusion of flipping through a family scrapbook, while listening to anecdotes of long-past Gypsy ancestors and their music.

Michael Dregni is the author of The New York Times bestseller Django: The Life and Music of a Gypsy Legend. A regular contributor to Vintage Guitar magazine, Michael’s writing has also appeared in Guitar Player and Acoustic Guitar magazines, as well as The Utne Reader and others. He’s the author of more than a dozen obscure books. Michael lives in Minneapolis, with his wife, two sons, and too many guitars.

Alain Antonietto is the world’s pioneering historian of Gypsy jazz. He is the author of numerous articles on Romany music, a long-time contributor to La Revue Etudes Tsiganes, and producer of albums collecting rare Gypsy music. He is also the coauthor of Django Reinhardt: Un géant sur son nuage and Django Reinhardt: Rythmes futurs. He lives in Paris.

Anne Legrand holds a Ph.D. in the history of music and musicology from the University of Paris Sorbonne. She curates the Charles Delaunay archives at the Bibliothèque Nationale de France. Anne has published essays on jazz history in reviews such as Les Cahiers du Jazz, Études, Cahiers d’Histoire de la Radiodiffusion, and Jazzman magazine.

Publication Date: November 2006, $25 USD, 9 x 8.50, 208 pages, Over 400 color/b&w photographs and illustrations, ISBN: 1-933108-10-X, ISBN 13: 978-1-933108-10-