Elek Bacsik

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Hungarian guitarist Elek Bacisk is a cousin of Django Reinhardt, and has continued his tradition of blending swing and gypsy elements into a coherent, expressive jazz mode. Bacisk initially studied classical…
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Hungarian guitarist Elek Bacisk is a cousin of Django Reinhardt, and has continued his tradition of blending swing and gypsy elements into a coherent, expressive jazz mode. Bacisk initially studied classical violin and played gypsy songs in Budapest, then switched to jazz guitar. As a teen, he recorded in a band with alto saxophonist Geza Szabo and trumpeter Jozsef Quitter, then later toured Europe with Mihaly Tabanyi's band. Bacisk moved to Paris in 1959, and through the early and mid-'60s recorded and played with visiting American musicians, among them Art Simmons, Quentin Jackson, Lou Bennett and Dizzy Gillespie. He also did sessions heading his own bands. Bacsik came to America in 1966, and worked from 1967-1974 with Teresa Brewer before cutting his own sessions. He appeared at the 1974 Newport Jazz Festival and 1984 Olympic Games Jazz Festival in Los Angeles.