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Album Review

Veteran jazz guitarist Martin Taylor is steeped in many jazz styles, especially the Gypsy jazz of Django Reinhardt, which he obviously knew to be able to play with Reinhardt's partner, violinist Stéphane Grappelli. Though the title of the CD may suggest that this another typical Reinhardt tribute, it has a different twist. First of all, Taylor is playing electric guitar throughout the session, while he uses a standard jazz rhythm section, consisting of pianist Jermaine Landsberger, bassist Davide Petrocca, and drummer Scotty Gottwald. The guitarist's originals range from the Gypsy swing-flavored "Chez Fernand" to the pretty ballad "True" and the cooking bop vehicle "Nigoloswing," the latter two being very modern in flavor. Landsberger also contributed a pair of pieces, including the dramatic "Hungaria" and the swinging "Leticia," with the composer taking a prominent role. Taylor has fun with mandolinist David Grisman's "Tipsy Gypsy" (written by Grisman to play with Grappelli for the soundtrack to the film King of the Gypsies, playing it as a lively duet with Petrocca. Taylor delivers a subtle performance of Reinhardt's famous composition "Manoir de Mes Reves" to wrap up this delightful CD.


Born: 1956 in Harlow, Essex, England

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Since the death of Joe Pass in 1994, Martin Taylor has become one of the most highly regarded guitarists in jazz. He was given his first guitar by his father, Buck Taylor. Although he was inspired at first by Django Reinhardt, it was piano players like Art Tatum that drew his attention and helped him practice to develop his phenomenal solo technique. In the late '70s, Stéphane Grappelli invited him to play in a series of concerts in France. The violinist was so impressed that he used Taylor often...
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Gypsy Journey, Martin Taylor
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