Friday, December 2, 2016

René Thomas - Guitar Genius

Regarded by Sonny Rollins, Stan Getz, Lee Konitz, Kenny Clarke... as one of the first soloists in the world, recognized by Jim Hall, Philip Catherine, Larry Coryell or John Mc Laughlin as a major and influential guitarist, René Thomas (Liège 1927-1975), gipsy and genius, has only left us with a few sides, valuable but too scarce for him to secure at least a posthumous recognition. So, do his fans welcome with passion the least resuscitated note, the least phrase rescued from the entropy. This CD produced by The Belgian Radio Television at the request of Florence Thomas, René's daughter, will fulfil René's fans' desires especially as the recordings it offers are of a very good quality. The extracts of the concerts selecled for this compilation are taking us across Europe from 1964 to 1974, the ten lost years of René's too short life. Track by track, the music carries us from Utrecht to Liège, from Wilhelmshaven to Comblain-la-Tour where was "chased" in 64 the most beautiful version of "Deep Purple" which appears on this CD. And one has to admit that when compared to the radiant flights of "All The Things You Are", the most fabulous techno-what's-its-name feats that today's stars eruct, suddenly seem to be sloppy and empty ! As empty and tasteless as looks the most unctuous musical syrup when compared to the touching ballads here performed by René at the pinnacle of his art : "Body and Soul", "‘Round Midnight", vehicles by means of which exploses the lyric and passionate art of this guitarist who better than any other was able to insufflate to the harmonies and sophisticated rhythms of modern jazz the vital warmth passed on to our sad world by this other gipsy whose name was Django Reinhardt. This masterly mixing between the Old and the New, this love match between the Fire and the Concept, here is undoubtedby the major characteristic of the playing and of the inimitable sound of Thomas, and what makes him different — right from the very first notes — from his colleagues and particularly from Jimmy Raney to whom he was so often compared. Django, René, gipsies. Strangers. Incredibly present and incredibly elsewhere at the same time.
S[even]teen years already that René has — gently — left this "bastringue" of stupidity and indifference, as did before him his friend Bobby Jaspar, then his Father and Master the Liège native saxophonist Raoul Faisant.
S[even]teen years and still, when listening again and again to this CD, ten thousand kids are going to learn, in these days of wine and rose, the most vivid of all lessons. Guitar lesson, of course, music lesson, life lesson, all lessons which time will never have hold on. Jazz !
Jean-Pol Schroeder Editor of the monthly magazine "Jazz in Time", from the booklet

René Thomas 
Guitar Genius


1 All The Things You Are (Kern, Hammerstein II)  9:12
2 Body And Soul (Green)  13:50
3 Deep Purple (DeRose)  6:43
4 You Go To My Head (Coots, Gillespie)  9:09
5 Just Friends (Lewis, Klenner)  9:46
6 B Like Bud (Thomas)  13:44
7 'Round Midnight (Monk)  6:53


[# 1, 2 & 7]
René Thomas - g
Henk Haverhoek - b
Eric Ineke - dr
Recorded in Utrecht ; 1972
[# 3]
René Thomas - g
Jacques Pelzer - fl
Benoit Quersin - b
Jacques Thollot - dr
Recorded at Comblain-la-Tour ; 1964
[# 4 & 6*]
Robert Jeanne* - ts
René Thomas - g
Léo Fléchet - p
Jean Lerusse - b
Felix Simtaine - dr
Recorded in Liège ; October 10, 1968
[# 5]
René Thomas - g
Rein De Graaf - p
Henk Haverhoek - b
Eric Ineke - dr
Recorded in Wilhelmshaven ; January 1974


the jazzman said...

Thank you. I find myself coming here first thing every morning. Such great surprises.

wightdj said...

Tasty, thanks.

Kndnsk said...

Thanks. A genius indeed.

Radenko said...

Thank you. I have vol. 2 and been searching for vol. 1.

BTW - I posted vol. 2 on our blog if you don't have it.

Telecaster Road said...

What can I can, you are great!

I only hope that I can do for you what you have done for me.
Thank you!


yewsta said...

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Nice, thanks.

Michel said...

Great! thanks for this vol 1 ! I'm a fan of René Thomas...could you upload the vol 2 please !

Anonymous said...

rene thomas guitar genius vol-2 please !

Melanchthon said...

Vol. 2 was on Dark Blue Note, I guess, as you can see above. Ask Radenko.

Michel said...

O.k, thanks Melanchthon for your reply,...yeah, if Radenko invites me to his blog that would be cool ! :)

Anonymous said...

Hallo Radenko, where are you ?

Michel said...

@Radenko: I've 4 rare tracks of R.Thomas -album: HENRI RENAUD SEXTET
Here the complete description:

email me if that interests you...

Greeting from Paris :)

dch said...

Thank You!

rm said...

merci beaucoup

Pete said...

Hi great blog site & great taste, love Rene Thomas and have a ton of his stuff but don't have this one, thanks a heap from Pete in Melbourne Australia.

Melanchthon said...

musician3 said...

EXCELLENT.........................THANK YOU FOR ALL

Roberto Ferrari said...

Thanks....your blog is absolutely the best!!!

Fred Archtop said...

Thanks Mel, I have no words for that one. How could I miss it before ???

Peter said...

Dear Melanchthon,

thank you so much for this gem!

Pedro del Castillo Alonso said...

Thank you very much Mel

deGallo said...

Thank you melanchthon! Nice!

Sphere said...


for some recently posted Rene Thomas material.

sep troelstra said...

Many thanks!!

neil said...

The latest recoding I have by him is 1964; so many thanks for these rarities, mel...

Tom+Jerry said...

many many thanks mel

picoso said...

thanks mel and welcome back, pls Radenko i would like to visit your blog, Jazz for ever.

kristophermc28 said...

Thanks Mel!

PabloSZ said...

Manny Thanks !

Isidoro Macarena said...

muchas gracias

Kovina Kris said...

great post!

Clement said...

Hi, is it possible to reupload the links to download this? many thanks!!!