Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Django Reinhardt - Djangology [1949 - Belgium]

Django Reihndardt is undeniably one of the world greatest guitarist. He's influenced countless contemporary musicians through his compositions (many of which are now jazz standards) and virtuosity. If he were still alive, January 23rd of this year would have been his 100th birthday. This month, events all over are being held in his honor, including my stomping grounds, the Bay Area. If you haven't been learned on Django yet, I'll shed a little light on this amazing fellow.

Django was born January 23rd, 1910 in Liverchies, Belgium to a nomadic gypsy family. He started playing banjo and accordion at the age of twelve which eventually brought him to playing night spots around Paris. When he was 18, his caravan caught fire while he and his pregnant wife were in it. They both survived, but Django was left forever disfigured. Due to severe burns, his left leg became immobilized, and he lost movement in 2 fingers on his left hand. But Django didn't stop playing. Instead he developed a unique playing technique that not at all hindered his ability. In fact, he proved to play better than guitarists with all working fingers and soon captured the hearts and ears of audiences worldwide.

The recordings on this album are performed along with violinist Stéphane Grappelli back in 1949.

Celebrate 100 years of Django Reinhardt!

1 comment:

bobandjan said...

My brother, Jimmy Bryant, one of the great guitarist in the Hall of Fame, learned much from Django Reinhardt.
Thank you Django. Jimmy was great & thanks to you for helping to develop his own unique style.