JAZZ BON MOTS…Serge Gainsbourg: The Collection 1958-62

Pianist, vocalist, composer,boyfriend of Brigitte Bardot and  even social provocateur later in life, Serge Gainsbourg was one of the few original French jazz artists in the  50s and 60s. While his last years were more legend than substance, his first four albums, which are represented here, have a fresh and exciting mix of bohemian jazz and Left Bank Chanson, creating a souffle’ of cool swinging sounds and moods.

His 1958 album Du Chant A La Une  is intimate and understated, whieh the followup No 2 includes Alain Goraguer & His Orchestra for some exciting rhythm pieces such as “Mambo Miam Miam” and “”L’Eau A La Bouche” The team gets together agin for the third album L’Etonnant Serge Gainsbourg” delivering strong and clever pieces such as “Villa Villa” and “Le Roc De Nerval” while the lst album Serge Gainsbourg No 4 includes the thougth ful “RequiemPour Un Twister.” Also added are five tasty instrumentals form an ep representing music from the film Les Loups Dans La Bergeris, and the music here would feel comfortable in any film noir. A cozy concert from Paris in 1958 creates a cabaret mood  on “Douze Belles Dans La Peau” and “Le Ponconneur Des Lilas.”

To hear European interpretations of 50s cool sounds is quite enlightening, with this 2 cd set filling in an important gap in jazz annals. Bravo!


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