Swingamajig

Swingamajig

BandJazzAcoustic

Eighteen-year-old Michael Fraser plays jazz violin with the feel of someone who’s been improvising his whole life. Backed by his dad, Don Fraser on rhythm guitar, this sizzling duo will get your toes tapping and your fingers snapping with some hot Swing and Gypsy Jazz instrumentals.

Biography

Swingamajig will get your toes tapping and your fingers snapping with some hot Swing and Gypsy Jazz instrumentals and a sprinkling of original tunes.

Eighteen-year-old Michael Fraser plays the violin with the jazz feel of someone who’s been improvising his whole life. He started his violin studies at age 4 and by age 9 he was already smitten with the music of Django Reinhardt’s Hot Club of France and the old Swing Jazz standards. His biggest inspiration comes from the raunchy fiddling of jazz violinist Stuff Smith and one can definitely sense Stuff’s hard-swinging influence in Michael’s improvisations.

When Michael was 11, he teamed up with his dad, Don, to form the duo Swingamajig. A multi-instrumentalist, Don has played piano, guitar, dobro, bass and banjo in a variety of local Vancouver Swing and Bluegrass bands. He has won numerous awards including 1st place at the Western Canadian Bluegrass Guitar Championship. In Swingamajig, he enjoys the challenges of playing rhythm guitar and is happy to let Michael bask in the spotlight. Behind the scenes, Don is constantly inspiring Michael to explore challenging musical material and has been instrumental in guiding Michael's jazz education by suggesting varied repertoire selections and sneaking must-listen-to jazz CDs on the living room CD player. They must be on the right track because in 2001, Michael was a recipient of a B.C. Entertainment Hall of Fame Foundation Scholarship in recognition of his “demonstrated talent, dedication and future potential in the field of music.”

Being part of the Swingamajig duo with his dad has been a rewarding experience for Michael. Michael has discovered that he loves to perform -- the bigger the crowd the better. And lucky for him he doesn’t get nervous on stage. In fact, in performance, Michael often surprises Don with some completely new and wild improvisations.

During Swingamajig’s 2004 Jam-with-the-Gypsies European mini-tour, Swingamajig was one of only 3 bands asked to perform at the open stage of the Samois Django Festival in France and Michael was the only musician invited onstage to perform with notable Gypsy musicians Angelo Debarre and Robin Nolan during the L’Esprit Manouche Festival in England. Michael, who was only 15 at the time, held his own in the company of world-class performers!

Video footage of these performances can be seen at:
http://www.youtube.com/swingamajig

PERFORMANCE HIGHLIGHTS

• Northwest Folklife Music Festival (WA) – 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001
• Vancouver International Jazz Festival (BC) – 2005, 2002
• Aarhus International Jazz Festival (Denmark) – 2004
• Mariposa Folk Festival, (ON) – 2003
• Djangofest Northwest (WA) – 2003, 2002
• Mission Folk Festival (BC) – 2003
• Kaslo Jazz Festival (BC) – 2003
• Maple Ridge Roots & Blues Festival (BC) – 2003
• Pender Harbour Jazz Festival (BC) – 2003
• Islands Folk Festival (BC) – 2002
• Vancouver Island MusicFest (BC) – 2002
• Sweet Basil Jazz Festival (BC) – 2002
• Harmony Arts Festival (BC) – 2002
• Alcan Dragon Boat Festival (BC) – 2002
• Vancouver International Children’s Festival (BC) – 2002

Check out Swingamajig's MySpace page at:
http://www.myspace.com/swingamajig

Discography

2004 - "Don't Sweat the Small Stuff"
2002 - "Swingamajig"

On the charts:
“Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff”
Reached #1 on the jazz charts at CFBX 92.5 FM
Reached #8 on the regular charts at CFBX 92.5 FM
Reached #7 on the Earshot Jazz Charts.

Set List

Swingamajig plays instrumental tunes from the Gypsy and Swing Jazz repertoire as well as a few original tunes.