Django Reinhardt

The Essential Django Reinhardt

by Ben Child

20 June 2011

 
cover art

Django Reinhardt

The Essential Django Reinhardt

(RCA/Legacy)
US: 15 Mar 2011
UK: 15 Mar 2011

The recordings on this release, which is a retitled, repackaged edition of a 1983 RCA release called The Indispensable Django Reinhardt, 1949-1950, represent a series of sessions held in Rome at the end of Reinhardt’s career and feature two different ensembles.  One reunites Reinhardt with his longtime accompanist Stephané Grappelli. Interestingly, Reinhardt’s final sessions are full of standards and they open themselves up to the innovations of bop, which is fascinating to hear. There’s also a sense that, as a stylist, Reinhardt’s willingness to absorb the chordal innovations of Parker and Gillespie mutes his own, highly-individuated take on the possibilities of jazz. In other words, these later recordings achieve the odd distinction of appearing simultaneously more innovative and slightly less distinctive than the earlier sides. This isn’t a complaint about the music but it is a warning: despite the boldness of the title, there’s other essential Reinhardt to be had elsewhere, particularly in the Hot Club of France recordings of the 30s where Grappelli plays a more pronounced role.

The Essential Django Reinhardt

Rating:

 

We all know how critical it is to keep independent voices alive and strong online. Please consider a donation to support our work as an independent publisher devoted to the arts and humanities. Your donation will help PopMatters stay viable through these changing and challenging times where advertising no longer covers our costs. We need your help to keep PopMatters publishing. Thank you.

 


//comments
//related
//Mixed media
//Blogs

20 Questions: Nashville Singer-Songwriter Natalie Hemby

// Sound Affects

"Natalie Hemby's Puxico is a standout debut from a songwriter who has been behind the scenes for over a decade.

READ the article