Alexander Borodin (1833-1887)
Alexander Borodin was a Russian composer, doctor, and chemist. Borodin was part of a group of composers called “The Five” who were interested in creating a nationalist school.
Borodin didn’t compose many works, but among his few works he is known for his Opera Prince Igor, the orchestra piece “On The Steppes of Central Asia,” and his two String Quartets. Borodin’s string quartets are full of beautiful lyrical melodies. His second quartet is famous because of its beautiful Nocturne.
Here is a recording of Borodin’s String Quartet no.2 performed by the Borodin Quartet. Enjoy.
The song “Chega de Saudade” (English translation is “No More Blues”) is a bossa nova. Bossa Novas are a lyrical fusion of the samba and jazz. Chega is said to be the first recorded bossa nova song. The song was composed by Antonio Carlos Jobim, and the lyrics were written by Vinicius de Moraes.
Jimmy Rosenberg is a Dutch gypsy guitarist. He is known for his playing of Gypsy Jazz and other similar styles of music. Here is a recording of Chega de Saudade played by Jimmy Rosenberg (lead guitar) and his trio. Enjoy.
Freddy Taylor was a jazz singer, trumpet player, band leader, guitarist, and dancer. He came to Paris from New York with the Lucky Millander orchestra on a tour in 1933. He worked with the orchestra for about a decade. During that time he took trumpet lessons from Bill Coleman. While he was in Paris in the 1930s, Freddy met up with Django Reinhardt and the Quintet of the Hot Club of France. They made recordings together. Freddy Taylor also had his own group called Freddy Taylor and His Swing Men from Harlem. In the 1940s Freddy came back to the U.S.A. and continued performing until the late 1960s.
The Quintet of the Hot Club of France
The Quintet of the Hot Club of France was formed by gypsy guitarist Django Reinhardt and violinist Stephane Grapelli in 1934. During the period before World War 2 the group was very popular and made hundreds of recordings. In the war years Django and Stephane split up and played with other groups. They met up again briefly after World War 2 and made some more recordings. Django Reinhardt died in 1953 and the group was disbanded. Stephane Grappelli had some difficult times and in the 1970s he became popular again. He performed and recorded with lots of musicians (jazz and classical) and toured around the world until his death in 1996.
“I Can’t Give You Anything But Love” is a popular jazz standard. Django Reinhardt, the Quintet of the Hot Club of France and jazz singer Freddy Taylor recorded it in 1947. Here is their recording of “I Can’t Give You Anything But Love.” Enjoy.
“After You’ve Gone” is a popular jazz standard written in 1918 by Turner Layton. Henry Creamer wrote the lyrics. Django Reinhardt recorded “After You’ve Gone” three times (in 1934, 1936, and 1949). Here is a recording of the song by Django Reinhardt, the Quintet of the Hot Club of France and jazz singer Freddy Taylor. Enjoy.
Blue Drag is a famous Django Reinhardt tune. It was recorded by Django Reinhardt, Stephane Grappelli, and the Quintet of the Hot Club of France in 1935. Here is a recording done by Freddy Taylor (vocals) and his group the Swing Men from Harlem. Freddy Taylor recorded another tune called Shine with Django Reinhardt, Stephane Grappelli and the Quintet of the Hot Club of France. He was a very popular jazz singer, tap dancer, trumpet player, and bandleader during the 1930s. Here is a recording of Blue Drag done by Freddy Taylor and his Swing Men from Harlem. Enjoy.
Shine was a tune that Django Reinhardt, Stephane Grappelli, and the Quintet of the Hot Club of France recorded with jazz singer Freddy Taylor in 1936. Here is the recording of Shine done by Freddy Taylor and the Quintet of the Hot Club of France. Enjoy.