Jonny has been working as a professional guitarist and guitar teacher for over twenty years.
Initially involved in the flamenco-jazz genre, Jonny played in a successful duo with Spanish guitarist, Ignacio Lozano, for five years in the early 90’s. During this time, he was signed to indie jazz label, ’33’ Records, and recorded two acclaimed albums of original material, ‘Spanglo’ and ‘Sur’. This led to tours and workshops all over the UK, with concert performances in art centres, theatres, festivals, television and radio.
After the project had run it’s course, Jonny made the decision to re-learn guitar technique and began to study the Gypsy way of playing in the style of Django Reinhardt.
Jonny has played with many of the great names in Gypsy Jazz today, including Bireli Lagrene, Lulu Reinhardt, Stochelo Rosenberg, Paulus Schäfer, Feigeli Prisor, Angelo Debarre, Rino van Hooijdonk and countless other fantastic players.
Click the videos below to watch Jonny playing with Gypsy Jazz legends!
From 1995 Jonny was soloist with the Sussex based Gypsy Jazz group, Ultraswing, until forming his own band, the Jonny Hepbir Trio, in 2006.
He has had the pleasure of working with some superb musicians such as violinists Andy Aitchison, Mike Piggott, Tim Kliphuis, Steve Elsworth and Christian Garrick. Guitarists, Mundell Lowe, John Etheridge, Dave Kelbie, Robin Nolan and multi-instrumentalist composer/arranger, Charlotte Glasson.
"Over the years, I've travelled to Holland, France and Germany to meet, play with and learn from some of the Gypsy Grand Masters... Great experiences...!"
Jonny’s performances have included the 2003 International Jazz Guitar Festival in Wrexham as a member of the Bireli Lagrene Quintette, all three legendary L’Esprit Manouche Festivals in Birmingham ’03, ’04 and ’05, The International Gypsy Guitar Festival in Gloucestershire ’02, ’04, ’06 and ’08, Beachdown Festival Brighton ’08, the Festival Django Reinhardt 2013 in Samois sur Seine, Birmingham Jazz Festival 2013, Margate Jazz Festival 2015, March Manouche Festival 2016 and 2018 and most recently at Swanage Jazz Festival 2018.
"Since my first encounter with Jonny Hepbir at the l'esprit manouche festival 2003, I've been impressed by his technique and authentic Gypsy sound. Jonny has performed with many of the great guitarists in the style and he's been a leading player on the UK Gypsy Jazz scene for years"
Swedish guitar wizard, Andreas Oberg
Jonny has recently released a new album of Gypsy Jazz guitar and accordion duets with accordion maestro, Dan Teper. The album is called ‘Dirty Swing’ and is available to buy on CD or download from iTunes, Amazon and CD Baby or our online SHOP
Currently, Jonny is concentrating on working with his Gypsy Swing trio and quartet, performing at private functions and public events throughout the UK and abroad.
Both ensembles have also released albums, ‘La Pompe & Circumstance’ by the Jonny Hepbir Trio and ‘Get Rich Or Die Swingin’ by the Jonny Hepbir Quartet. These albums are also available to buy on CD or download from iTunes, Amazon and Google play or by visiting the online SHOP.
In 2020 the Trio and Quartet released two albums, 'Wow! That's What I Call Swing Vol. 1 & 2', which are retrospective compilations from the last 10 years of recordings. Both albums are available to buy on CD by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org