Home » Jazz Musicians » Hot Club of Philadelphia

Hot Club of Philadelphia

The Hot Club of Philadelphia was started in 2001 by guitarist Barry Wahrhaftig. They are an acoustic ensemble, dedicated to playing 'Gypsy Jazz.' That's the term used to describe the music pioneered by the legendary original 'Hot Club of France Quintet,' which was led by guitarist Django Reinhardt and Violinist Stephane Grappelli. Django and Grappelli were attempting to do their own version of American 'Hot Jazz,' as played by stars like Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington. They used acoustic guitars, bass and violin, rather than horns and drums. Grappelli and Django added some French and Gypsy flavor and created a blend of music that is quite popular and accessible. The HCPhilly mixes the original style of the HCOF, along with their own modern influences.

The band performs as a trio, quartet, quintet, etc. There have been some changes in the line up through the years. Bassist Jim Stager has been with the group from the beginning. Joshua Machiz, Alexandre Hiele and Dylan Taylor all perform with the band frequently. Dan Pearce is the 2nd guitarist, and violinist Joseph Arnold is a key part of the group's recordings and shows, and clarinetists Bob Butryn and Paul Butler are also mainstays.

The band features vocalists Phyllis Chapell and Cecilia Ferneborg, and has also collaborated with Denise King. Barry also sings, and he'll add a Sinatra or Nat King Cole standard, in addition to songs of the '20s '30s & '40s.

The group has performed for a wide range of venues, including; The Kimmel Center's PIFA Festival, the area's first 'Diner en Blanc', The World Café Live, Sellersville Theater, WHYY-NPR, Musikfest-Bethlehem, Pastorius Park Summer Festival, the Philadelphia Folk Festival, The Barnes Foundation & The Phila Museum of Art, to name a few.

Their first CD, Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams (2010) was very well received. Their new release, Gypsy Routes, (2015), features guest spots by Howard Alden, Titi Bamberger, Larry McKenna, Phyllis Chapell and Marty Grosz


Manouche Modele Jazz guitar, Shertler amp


Album Review

Hot Club of Philadelphia: Wrap Your Troubles In Dreams

Read "Wrap Your Troubles In Dreams" reviewed by Wade Luquet

Gypsy jazz has had a resurgence of late with Hot Club bands and Django Reinhardt-style guitar strummers and pickers popping up in major cities world-wide. Philadelphia boasts one of the hottest of these bands— The Hot Club of Philadelphia. More than a Django cover band, this group adds a gypsy twist to a multitude of tunes including those from the Great American Songbook on their CD Wrap Your Trouble In Dreams. Led by a master of the genre, ...

Read more articles

Performance / Tour

Gypsy Jazz meets Bluegrass: The Hot Club of Philadelphia double bill with The Cheddar Boys at The Livingroom’s new location

Gypsy Jazz meets Bluegrass: The Hot Club of Philadelphia double bill with The Cheddar Boys  at The Livingroom’s new location

Source: All About Jazz

Two of Philadelphia’s acoustic music mainstays perform at one of the city’s hidden gems A city staple of the past 20 years, The Hot Club of Philadelphia Gypsy Jazz Band, (HCP) is slated for their first performance at The Living Room at 35 East’s new larger location (35 East Ardmore Ave), on Friday October 1, joined by another local favorite, the “y’allternative” Bluegrass-Country band The Cheddar Boys. HCP will play their blend of Django Reinhardt & Stephane Grappelli classics, Klezmer, ...

Performance / Tour

Hot Club Of Philly In Cheltenham Wed. May 7th!

Hot Club Of Philly In Cheltenham Wed. May 7th!

Source: Jim Miller

The Jazz Bridge First Wednesdays Neighborhood Concerts Series at the Cheltenham Center for the Arts, 439 Ashbourne Road in Cheltenham, presents the Hot Club of Philly on Wednesday, May 7th. Showtime is 7:30 p.m., tickets are $10/$5 for students, and are only available at the door. For info: 215-517-8337 or visit Jazz Bridge. The Hot Club of Philadelphia was founded in 2001 by guitarist Barry Wahrhaftig and violinist Mark Campiglia. This unique acoustic jazz quartet, which also includes Jim Stager ...


Performance / Tour

Hot Club Of Philadelphia @ Kennett Flash, Kennett Square Pa On Wednesday, March 6th

Hot Club Of Philadelphia @ Kennett Flash, Kennett Square Pa On Wednesday, March 6th

Source: Jim Miller

Jazz Bridge in Kennett Square! presents the Hot Club of Philadelphia, appearing at Kennett Flash—102 Sycamore Alley in Kennett Square—on Wednesday, March 6th. Tickets are $10, $5 for students, and are available only at the door. Show time is 7:30. Information: 215-517-8337. Guitarist Barry Wahrhaftig and violinist Mark Campiglia founded the Hot Club of Philadelphia in 2001 as an ensemble dedicated to performing, preserving and celebrating the music and the style of one of the most influential guitarists in jazz ...

"Philadelphia can claim another Hot Swing act besides the great Joe Venuti." —Djangobooks.com "The Hot Club's first CD, entitled Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams, features Wahrhaftig, and an array of other well-known local players, violinist Mark Campiglia, Bob Butryn clarinet, Phyllis Chapell and Denise King vocals and Jim Stager bass. Howard Alden, also makes a strong appearance." —Art Howe, Philadelphia Inquirer

Primary Instrument

Band / ensemble / orchestra



Willing to teach

Advanced only


Studied with Howard Alden, Fapy Lafertin, Stephane Wrembel, Larry McKenna, Joe Sgro. Master classes/ workshops with; Tal Farlow, Angelo DeBarre, Robin Nolan, John Jorgenson. Private lessons $50 per hour contact me for workshop & group rates

Clinic/Workshop Information

Basic foundations of Gypsy Jazz Guitar, rhythm, [pompe], Gypsy Picking, chord shapes, building solos, transcribing, developing phrasing, basic rep., including classic Django solos, waltzes, etc




Get more of a good thing!

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories, our special offers, and upcoming jazz events near you.