Friday, February 5, 2016

Django Reinhardt (Decca & Clef Sessions)

1953 promised to become a great year for Django Reinhardt : he had met Norman Granz in January at the “Alhambra” in Paris where the promoter and impresario considered hiring the guitarist for an extended tour in the fall through the U.S., Europe and Japan. A few weeks later, Django Reinhardt played with his combo in Brussels andjammed with Dizzy Gillespie who adored the guitarist. Even though Reinhardt knew about his serious health problems, he cared little and refused to see a doctor. Shortly after returning to his semi-rural retreat in Sannois after an exhaustive tour and before any possible plans materialized, the great artist died unexpectedly in early summer 1953. Jean Baptiste “Django” Reinhardt was born in Liverchies, Belgium, on January 23, 1910. Even as a child, he played violin, banjo and guitar. In the years following World War I, Django played with various bands in and around Paris. On November 2, 1928, his career seemed to have come to a premature end when his caravan went up in flames, seriously burning his left hand. After several operations and more than a year in hospital, he was able to play guitar again, although two fingers of his left hand remained permanently paralyzed. He continued working with today mostly forgotten musicians, but then began an association with singer Jean Sablon, who used him as accompanist on several recording-sessions. By now, he was enjoying increasing contacts with jazz and hot-dance musicians, and was beginning to record regularly with some of the best French bands, notably those led by Michel Warlop and Guy “Patrick” Paquinet. Django’s fame grew rapidly as a result of the first sessions by the “Quintet Du Hot Club De France”, and by the late thirties all visiting American jazz musicians were eagerly seeking the opportunity to record with him. His musical companion Stéphane Grappelly spent the war years in England, whereas Django decided to remain in occupied France. Despite the persecution of gypsies, he was able to continue playing and recording. After the Liberation, he was still very much in favour with visiting American musicians, and in 1946 he even went to America to play with the Duke Ellington Orchestra. That same year also brought a joyful reunion with Grappelly. Django continued playing and recording, but gradually disappeared from the scene during the early fifties. Django Reinhardt died in Samois, east of Paris, on May 16, 1953.Volume 17 of the recordings of Django Reinhardt presented in chronological order, opens with the two remaining tracks from a May 1951 date. More than half a year passed without any chance to record in the studios. The session with Roger Guérin does not sound very well rehearsed but still, Django’s somewhat hasty contributions are delightful. Exactly 12 months later, Guérin is again heard on half of the tracks from January 1953. “D.R. Blues” also sounds rather improvised but is in fact fine. The following session is a highlight. As if producer Charles Delauney realized there were only a few occasions left, this pre-ultimate session in the life of Django Reinhardt reverts to a form reminiscent of his heyday in the late thirties: Backed by a solid rhythm section only, the guitarist re-interprets some of his finest songs, including “Manoir de mes Rêves” and the eternal “Nuages”. The latter has rarely been played by Reinhardt with more emotion and feeling – a real gem. Lovely as the closing session is, it does not match these emotional moments. Five weeks after “Deccaphonie” was recorded the guitarist died, not long after celebrating his 43rd birthday.
Anatol Schenker, June 2007

Source :

Django Reinhardt
Chronological Classics


1 Impromptu (Reinhardt)  2’43
2 Vamp (Reinhardt)  2’34

3 Keep Cool (Fol)  3’03
4 Flèche d’Or (Reinhardt)  2’58
5 Troublant Boléro (Reinhardt)  3’32
6 Nuits De Saint-Germain-Des-Prés (Reinhardt)  3’06

7 Crazy rhythm (Caesar, Meyer, Kahn)  3’07
8 Anouman (Reinhardt)  2’44
9 D.R. Blues (Reinhardt)  3’08
10 Fine and Dandy (James, Swift)  3’10

DJANGO REINHARDT & SES RYTHMES (session clef/Blue Star)
11 Blues for Ike (Reinhardt)  3’20
12 September song (Weill, Anderson)  2’33
13 Night and Day (Porter)  2’50
14 Insensiblement (Misraki)  3’06
15 Manoir de mes rêves (Reinhardt)  2’35
16 Nuages (Reinhardt)  3’15
17 Brazil (Barreso)  2’25
18 Confessin’ (Neiburg, Daugherty, Reynolds)  3’57

19 Le soir (Gasté)  2’55
20 Chez moi (Misraki)  2’57
21 I cover the waterfront (Heyman, Green)  3’24
22 Deccaphonie (Reinhardt)  3’47


Featuring Bernard Hulin, Hubert Fol, Raymond Fol, Pierre Michelot, Pierre Lemarchand, Barney Spieler, Roger Guérin, Maurice Vander, Jean-Louis Viale, "Fats" Sadi Lallemand, Martial Solal, etc.

Recorded in Paris, between May 11, 1951 & April 8, 1953

(See the complete artwork for all detail,
sessions, dates, musicians, etc...)


Morris said...

This is a wonderful share. I don't know if you have it, but it would be worth to be able to compare this to the first Classics release, just to see how far he came in those sixteen or so years.

Thanks again.

the jazzman said...

Thanks for still more Django.

Melanchthon said...

I have only 1935-1936, posted here :

Radiodada said...

Excellent work!

Alberto Cos said...

Merci bien, Mel!!

cvllos said...

Welcome, Melanchthon!

estravagario said...

GREAT ! Thank you very much Melanchthon!

Melanchthon said...

deGallo said...

Thank you

Blue Eyes said...

Fabulous share Mel, a MUST HAVE!

P.S For the story, au mois de Novembre 2015, j'ai commandé The Last Studio Sessions 1951-1953 with a great bonus Track from a radio broadcast ( )et depuis je ne l'ai toujours pas reçu... :(

Fred Archtop said...

Thanks Mel. Great bebop Django !

Melanchthon said...

Salut Blue Eyes, et cette version de "Yesterdays", on ne la trouve nulle part ailleurs ?

AmyBRAINS said...

Incredible Django!!!
Many, many thanks, Melanchthon.

Blue Eyes said...

Salut Mel, tu as raison, cette si émouvante et belle version se trouve dans ton post "The Complete Django Reinhardt, vol. 20 [Frémeaux & Associes]"! un grand merçi à toi !

Blue Eyes said...

A propos de mon achat "The Last Studio Sessions 1951-1953", je viens d'être remboursé aujourd'hui...j'ai de la chance!...(je l'avais commandé pour le remastering fait en 2013 afin d'évaluer la qualité du son)