All about Dicky Wells And His Orchestra

Hangin’ Around Boudon Dicky Wells and his Orchestra
Hangin’ Around Boudon on YouTube Bill Dillard, Shad Collins, Bill Coleman (tp); Dicky Wells (tb); Django Reinhardt (g solo);
Richard “Dick” Fullbright (b); Bill Beason (dm)
1937 July 7 - Swing, Paris
Bugle Call Rag Dicky Wells and his Orchestra
Bugle Call Rag on YouTube Bill Dillard, Shad Collins, Bill Coleman (tp); Dicky Wells (tb); Django Reinhardt (g solo);
Richard “Dick” Fullbright (b); Bill Beason (dm)
1937 July 7 - Swing, Paris
Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea Dicky Wells and his Orchestra
Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea on YouTube Bill Dillard, Shad Collins, Bill Coleman (tp); Dicky Wells (tb); Django Reinhardt (g solo);
Richard “Dick” Fullbright (b); Bill Beason (dm)
1937 July 7 Recording Session - Swing, Paris
I Got Rhythm Dicky Wells and his Orchestra
I Got Rhythm on YouTube Bill Dillard, Shad Collins, Bill Coleman (tp); Dicky Wells (tb); Django Reinhardt (g solo);
Richard “Dick” Fullbright (b); Bill Beason (dm)
1937 July 7 - Swing Paris
Sweet Sue Dicky Wells and his Orchestra
Sweet Sue on YouTube Bill Dillard, Shad Collins, Bill Coleman (tp); Dicky Wells (tb); Django Reinhardt (g solo);
Richard “Dick” Fullbright (b); Bill Beason (dm)
1937 July 7 - Swing, Paris
Japanese Sandman Dicky Wells and his Orchestra
Japanese Sandman on YouTube Bill Dillard, Shad Collins, Bill Coleman (tp); Dicky Wells (tb); Django Reinhardt (g solo);
Richard “Dick” Fullbright (b); Bill Beason (dm)
1937 July 7 - Swing, Paris

Even before the Quintette of the Hot Club of France started recording, Django Reinhardt was a first-call player whenever American artists recorded in Paris. Owing that Django could barely read and write his own name, let alone music scores, it was amazing that he achieved such a status. But his ear was precise and he could translate what he heard to the guitar with stunning accuracy, and that is a major part of his legendary reputation.

Trumpeter Bill Coleman and trombonist Dickie Wells were touring Paris as part of the Teddy Hill Orchestra when they recorded this session for Swing (Dizzy Gillespie was also with the band, and ironically, he was the only trumpeter from the band not invited to play at the session!) This delightful version of "Japanese Sandman" was the last song cut that day and it features remarkable solos by all three principals. Wells is up first, barely touching the melody before moving into his own invention. Yet he never loses sight of the opening motive and many of his ideas are related to that motive, either rhythmically or melodically. Coleman follows with his sunny, open tone. His first half-chorus features a set of perfectly-balanced phrases. Then the last phrase spills into the bridge and his phrasing shifts three beats off the form. Coleman keeps things that way until he ties it all up with a beautifully-played 6-bar phrase. Then Django steps up with a mostly single-string solo that features some intriguing harmonic choices in the 5th-8th bars. The rest of the solo is rather straight-forward harmonically, so it's hard to know whether Django was fully aware of what he was doing and if he considered it a momentary mis- step (If Dizzy had been at the session, he would have known!). However, it was not an isolated incident and Django, who later expressed admiration for the harmonic innovations of Gillespie and Charlie Parker, would experiment again with advanced harmonies in the next few years, several years before bebop was born. Reviewer: Thomas Cunniffe
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