Perhaps the most brilliant guitarist ever, Django Reinhardt [previously] has proven an exemplar to many of today’s masters of the six-string. And he did it with a
right left hand [see comments] with only three functional fingers [the ring and pinkie fingers were rendered immobile in his youth by a fire in his gypsy caravan].
His Quintette du Hot Club de France created some of the most memorable jazz and swing recordings of of the 1930s and 1940s, continuing even under the Nazi occupation of Paris, when “gypsies” [members of the Roma and Sinti peoples] along with Jews were marked for death.
The group consisted of Reinhardt as lead guitar, Eugène Vées as second guitar, Hubert Rostaing on clarinet, Emmanuel Soudieux on bass, and Pierre Fouad on drums. But a key player on many recordings was violinist Stéphane Grappelli, a man whose skills were almost as great as Reinhardt’s.
Struggling with the ongoing nausea of chemotherapy, we find solace in Reinhardt’s music, and we suspect his tunes will get your toes a-tappin’ as well.
So on with the show. . .