Here is a great review from Jazz Profiles! I am feeling grateful!
"Sometimes coincidences are just that - coincidences, this despite the oft-repeated cliche to the effect that there “aren’t any coincidences.”
I mean what’s the likelihood of a recording that “touches on the tradition of the legendary gypsy guitar of Django Reinhardt” crossing the threshold of the editorial offices at JazzProfiles while said group is working on a feature about Peche à la Mouche, the great Blue Star sessions of 1947 and 1953 fabled Django?
But that’s exactly what happened recently with the arrival of guitarist Luke Hendon self-produced CD Silk & Steel courtesy of Chris DiGirolamo of Two for the Show Media.
But let me be clear here: while there are similarities with Django, Luke Hendon is his own man. Sure, the Django influence is immediately identifiable in the choice of instrument - acoustic guitar, accompaniment - more acoustic guitars, violin, bass and sax/clarinet, and repertoire with its Swing era, foot-tapping up-tunes and slow ballads, each infused with a certain folkloric, gypsy lyricism.
But what sets Luke apart from Django is the Aristotelian adage that “We are all different with regard to those things we have in common.”
Hendon’s improvisations are his own; they are not derived from Django. It takes a brave musician to improvise using an approach to Jazz so dominated by one of its iconic figures and yet to hold the belief that you have something original to say to say in that style of playing.
And that’s what’s going on in Silk and Steel - an homage to Django’s influence accompanied by Luke’s statement of independent creativity.
What is also going on in Luke Hendon’s music is a reaffirmation of Jazz as “fun.” It’s very apparent here that no one is taking themselves too seriously. Luke and his associates are very accomplished musicians who create music that they obviously take a great delight in making; music that is well-played and entertaining.
If you have an affinity for the music of Django Reinhardt, Stephane Grappelly and The Quintet of the Hot Club of Paris, then get yourself a copy of Steel and Silk. I guarantee you’ll love it."