Biography All Music Guide
All Music Guide:
The French based Paris Combo was formed in 1995 when the trio of Belle Du Berry, Francois-Francois and Potzi (who'd all been performing together) were joined by David Lewis and Mano Razanajato. An unlikely meeting of varying cultures combined in the formation of this acoustic group -- two French members, vocalist du Berry and drummer Francois, Australian trumpeter Lewis, Madagasgan bassist Ranzanajato and Mediterranean guitarist Potzi. Collectively they combine several styles of music like cabaret, gypsy, and swing jazz and inject them sparingly with Latin rhythms, Spanish guitar and on rarer instances with Asian and Mid-Eastern motifs. This esoteric melding of cultures and musical influences yields a hybrid that, while it relies on retro sources, comes across as neither contrived nor forced. Du Berry's flitting yet commanding voice lies somewhere between that of Edith Piaf and Anna Purnell. Potzi's guitar playing combines the gypsy styling and swing of Django Reinhardt the warm intonations of Joe Pass and the rhythm of Charlie Christian. Lewis' frequently muted trumpet recalls the swing and sweet bands of the 30s and 40s. He also doubles on piano which enhances the jazz effect but the diversity of Paris Combo prevents any strict categorization. Their debut Paris Combo was released in 1997 followed by Living Room in 1999. Both were released on the American, Tinder Records label and both retained the same personnel. Attraction was released in 2001 on Polygram.