"La Pompadour de Louis XIV", Madame de Montespan réunit en elle son éclat et sa part d'ombre, voici, par Jean Christian Petitfils son portrait éblouissant et sans concession…
Charlie Christian's career was all too brief, lasting a mere five years. After catching the attention of John Hammond, who recommended him to Benny Goodman, he appeared on fewer than 100 sessions between 1939 and 1941, mostly broadcasts, plus a few privately recorded sessions issued on various labels over the years, in addition to his well-known studio recordings and with Goodman. While the music in this compilation has been previously available, this collection has to much recommend it. First of all, new digital transfers have been made from original acetates from the Jerry Newhouse collection, rather than relying on later generation sources. Frank Driggs' detailed liner notes provide a wealth of historical background and there are also lots of photographs. But the most important factor is the music itself.
Definitive's mini-anthology of classic recordings featuring pioneer electrically amplified guitarist Charlie Christian is an excellent core sample taken from his brief and eventful career. Note that Definitive has also issued what purport to be compilations containing all of Christian's complete live and studio recordings, as well as another more modestly proportioned sampler entitled The Genius of the Electric Guitar. Charlie Christian was like a will-o'-the-wisp, a strikingly creative sideman who appeared at studio sessions and live jams during a span of months only adding up to a couple of years before succumbing to tuberculosis at the age of 25 in 1942. On Definitive's Celestial Express, the guitarist is heard with various groups led by Lionel Hampton and Benny Goodman, with Edmond Hall's Celeste Quartet, and with the Kansas City Six (a band including Count Basie and Lester Young) at the second From Spirituals to Swing concert in Carnegie Hall.
Lillinger und der tiefe Grund: Viel zu entdecken gibt es in dieser Musik, die nicht ganz einfach ist - aber auf ungemein reichhaltige Art zeigt, dass es sich für den Hörer sehr lohnen kann, Hürden zu überwinden. Eine hochkomplexe Schönheit entsteht in dieser Musik, bei der sich Stück für Stück immer mehr herausstellt, dass sie von einer hingebungsvollen Empfindsamkeit geprägt ist. Und die so vertrackt virtuos sein kann, dass einem der Atem stockt.