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​​​​​​​Makin Waves Song of the Week: "Tiger Rag" by Stephane Wrembel's Django New Orleans

By Bob Makin

originally published: 09/08/2023

​​​​​​​Makin Waves Song of the Week: "Tiger Rag" by Stephane Wrembel

Maplewood-based jazz guitarist Stephane Wrembel’s Django New Orleans project will perform Sept. 16 at (Le) Poisson Rouge in New York City. Their version of the Dixieland standard “Tiger Rag” is the Makin Waves Song of the Week. 

Stephane Wrembel’s Django New Orleans is a nine-piece group led by the heralded Maplewood-based jazz guitarist.

From Stephane’s 17th recording, “Django New Orleans,” on his own Water Is Life label, their version of the Dixieland standard “Tiger Rag” is the Makin Waves Song of the Week.

As the Makin Waves Song of the Week, “Tiger Rag” also can be heard between 6 and 8 p.m. on Sept. 8 on “Radio Jersey” at If you miss it, you can tune in any time in the archives at The Penguin and MixCloud.

Best known for his original compositions “Bistro Fada” and  “Big Brother” from the respective Woody Allen films “Midnight in Paris” and “Vicky Cristina Barcelona,” Stephane’s super-group comprises some of the best jazz and world music players in the mid-Atlantic: Josh Kaye on rhythm guitar, Joe Boga on trumpet, Adrien Chevalier on violin, Joe Correia on sousaphone, David Langlois on percussion, Nick Driscoll on clarinet and soprano saxophone, and Scott Kettner on drums, and Sarah King on vocals. All perform on the album and live.

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Like much of Stephane’s career, Django New Orleans pay homage to the legendary guitarist-composer Django Reinhardt, blending the traditional sounds of New Orleans brass and percussion with the voices of Django’s gypsy jazz-style guitar. From swing to second lines, Django New Orleans is a magical night of music, said Jason Olaine, vice president of programming for Jazz At Lincoln Center, where the band made their debut in November of 2021 with eight sold-out shows at Dizzy’s Club followed by a performance at NYC’s Town Hall to a packed house in early May of 2023 upon the  “Django New Orleans.”

“Django New Orleans is a downhome party meets a high-end listening experience, as Stephane organically blends the music of Reinhardt and classic New Orleans repertoire together with just the right amount of understated flash and acoustic funk,” Jason said. “The second-line spirit of Congo Square -- replete with tuba, acoustic bass, horns, washboard/percussion and bass drum -- has a French flair as Stephane's tasteful yet pyrotechnic acoustic guitar work is augmented by an equally virtuosic violin and additional guitar. Django New Orleans is the best of both worlds.”

Stephane Wrembel’s Django New Orleans next will perform Sept. 16 at (Le) Poisson Rouge in New York City. They’ll play a selection of their album’s 10 tracks, which also includes gypsy jazz-inspired New Orleans-style treatments of Django’s “Nypheas,” Stephane’s “Bistro Fada,” Duke Ellington’s “Caravan,” Paul Barbarin’s NOLA party anthem “Bourbon Street Parade,” the jazz standards “Confessin’ That I Love You” and “Dinah,” and the traditional numbers “Joshua Fit The Battle of Jericho,” “St. James Infirmary,” and “Dark Eyes.”

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Bob Makin has produced Makin Waves since 1988. Follow Makin Waves on Facebook and contact Bob at

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