He is, of course, addressing his esteemed fans and listeners when the great gypsy swing guitarist Wawau Adler calls his new album “I Play With You.” But he could also be referring specifically to his instrument. He changes playfully between the Selmer No. 828, a classical guitar from the forties, over modern types to the electric guitar. Finally, the title could also refer to the repertoire that is played here: After Adler has interpreted in his earlier recordings mainly standards – his last album “Happy Birthday Django 110”, released two years ago, was, for example, explicitly dedicated to his and the great role model of all gypsy jazz guitarists Django Reinhardt – and interspersed in each case only a few original compositions, it is now for the first time exactly the opposite.
With his own songs you can now get to know the whole Wawau Adler on “I Play With You”. The one who never denies his Manouche roots, but who has derived his own style from them and has always applied it to all jazz like few of his generation. Biréli Lagrène was the first formative influence for Josef “Wawau” Adler, born in Karlsruhe in 1967, when he was twelve years old. The guitarist who is considered by many to be Django Reinhardt’s most legitimate successor precisely because he never simply copied the forefather of hot jazz and gypsy swing, but developed him further in his own way and transferred him to modern jazz styles. And Adler did and does the same.