Django Reinhardt et le Quintette du Hot Club de France,
avec Stéphane Grappelli
Stéphane Grappelli (vln);
Django Reinhardt (g solo);
Pierre "Baro" Ferret, Marcel Bianchi (g);
Louis Vola (b)
1937 April 22 - Columbia, Paris
Django Reinhardt opens this version of "When Day Is Done" with a dramatic unaccompanied guitar cadenza. One suspects he was trying toemulate Louis Armstrong's introduction to West End Blues and indeed, one can imagine young guitarists being bowled over by the recording. It impresses one as well, but the solo that follows is quite special for what "isn't" there. As the introduction has plenty of contrast between chorded sectionsand single lines, the ensuing solo is entirely comprised of single line melody and embellishment. The filigrees are tasty, the bent notes are heart-rending, and the atmosphere is so engulfing that it's hard not to imagine yourself floating in a canoe down the Seine as Django and his friends serenadeyou. The mood breaks as Django picks up the tempo and Grappelli enters. While the final choruses are well-played, this time the disconnect is too great from what came before and this part of the recording just sounds like more of the same. Time to go back and listen to the first half of the recordagain!