French swing group to perform in Saranac Lake

SARANAC LAKE – Les Chauds Lapins will bring a repertoire of French swing music from the 1920s through the ’40s to the Left Bank Cafe Wednesday.

Led by Kurt Hoffman and Meg Reichardt of New York City, the group has rearranged long-forgotten French classics for banjo-ukulele, string trio, guitar and winds, mixing the rootsy-ness of early American jazz with the lushness of a Bernard Hermann film soundtrack.

Les Chauds Lapins, French for “the Hot Rabbits,” recently released a second album, “Amourettes,” which oscillates between romantic and quirky, retro and modern, French and American.

Prior to their turn as French entertainers, Reichardt was best known as one-fourth of the Americana group The Roulette Sisters, who’ve performed twice in Saranac Lake. Hoffman was co-leader of cult instrumental band The Ordinaires – who had an ’80s indie-hit cover of Led Zeppelin’s “Kashmir” – and as sideman and arranger for such luminaries as They Might be Giants, Frank Black and the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion.

The performance is scheduled to begin promptly at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Left Bank Cafe, 36 Broadway, Saranac Lake. It’s presented by Seward’s Folly Productions with sound by Beehive Productions. Admission is $15, and it was mostly sold out as of Monday, according to Peter Seward of Seward’s Folly Productions.

Seward, of Lake Placid, has described his booking of Les Chauds Lapins has being years in the making.