Django Reinhardt, was one of the great musicians of the twentieth century and arguably the greatest guitarist who ever lived who had an important influence on Les Paul, Charlie Christian, B.B. King, Jerry Garcia, Chet Atkins, and many others. Jeff Beck once said: "By far the most astonishing guitar player ever has got to be Django Reinhardt. Django was quite superhuman."
Handsome, charismatic, childlike, and unpredictable, Reinhardt was a character out of a picaresque novel. Born in a gypsy caravan at a crossroads in Belgium, he was almost killed in a freak fire that burned half of his body and left his left hand twisted into a claw. But with this maimed left hand flying over the frets and his right hand plucking at dizzying speed, Django became Europe's most famous jazz musician, commanding exorbitant fees and spending the money as fast as he made it. He had a long musical partnership with violinist Stéphane Grappelli - the one suave and smooth, the other sharper and more dissonant, together they evolved their novel string jazz ensemble, Quintette du Hot Club de France.
Djangos' career was one full of musical diversity, from his swing-styled Nouveau Quintette, to his big band Django's Music, and his later bebop ensemble, as well as his many compositions, including symphonic pieces influenced by Ravel and Debussy and his unfinished organ mass inspired by Bach. Sadly he died at only 43 of a brain haemorrhage but his influence has never diminished and his work continues to be discovered by younger generations thanks to a constant stream of reissues like this one.