The best guitar music I have heard in a long time.
Mark Hammond | Chambersburg, PA USA | 12/24/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I am one of those people who grew up knowing about waltzes, whether it be the Viennese waltz or the Tennessee waltz. Over the years, I learned about variations of the waltz through ballroom dancing - the American waltz, Viennese waltz, the Argentine vals, certain German folk waltzes, and so forth. I like waltzes because I like to dance them. I purchased "Impair & Valse" with the thought that it was just another waltz album. I did not know the artist or anything about the music."Impair & Valse" is entirely instrumental, and it shows the mastery and ingenuity of Romane, otherwise known as Patrick Leguidcoq, a true guitar master. Although the music is played by Romane on a guitar accompanied by Alice Bassié on double bass, it sounds like it is played by a larger orchestra. The liner notes informed me that these are Gypsy Waltzes of the 1920's and 1930's. I had never heard of Gypsy Waltzes, but I liked the music I heard. I had been interested in classical guitar as a college student, and I had listened to the music of the Romeros and Carlos Montoya. Further reading of the liner notes showed that this album includes "swing waltzes" heavily influenced by the French "musette." The album includes original pieces by Romane, as well as the noted "pre-beebop" guitarist Django Reinhardt, Baro Ferret, and Paul "Tchan Tchou" Vidal. The guitar work shows some influence of swing-like guitar technique including unexpected chords, rolls, inflections, to jazz up the performance and make up for the absence of the accordion which had traditionally been present in the Gypsy Waltz. The album includes 20 music tracks, only the first 11 of which are listed on the compact disk. Tracks 11 through 20 are listed as "playbacks" which allow guitarists or accordionists to play unaccompanied. After having listened to the album for several times, I put the disk in my CD-ROM drive and was pleased to see a presentation about Romane. It was brought to my attention in a review by another reviewer that there is supposed to be a transcription of 10 waltzes which can be printed out on your computer. I must admit that I was unable to get them to print out. It is not like I would have any use for transcribed music as I am not a musician. If you like classical guitar, gypsy guitar, or just waltz music, you will love this disk. It is great music for dancing, and even better to just take time to listen and enjoy."
A great tribute to Baro Ferret
JEAN-MARIE JUIF | BESANCON France | 08/23/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Romane Leguidcoq is one of great gipsy players in France,although I think he's not a gipsy.This way of playing guitar jazz was originated by Django Reinhardt,and some lesser known musicians,as the Ferret brothers,Baro,Sarane and Matlo,and some great ancestors,Gusti Malha for example.In French music of this century,gipsy waltzes are just like the blues in America;the music was played by the same kind of people - forgotten by everybody when they've stopped playing.THis record,only composed of waltzes,is an amazing one;I've wished for many years that such a record could be issued.It includes the major waltzes,written by wonderful musicians (accordeon players Gus Viseur,Tony Murena,Jo Privat,guitar players Gusti Malha,Paul "Tchan Tchou" Vidal,nicknamed this way because he looked like a chinese at his birth,Paul "Baro" Ferret,and Django,who wrote a couple of waltzes,but never recorded them).Beeing french,I apologize for saying this,but I think that nobody ever played guitar better than french gipsies;specially when they play waltzes.If you buy this cd,and if you enjoy it,search for other gipsy players like Tschavolo Schmitt,Dorado Schmitt,Titi Winterstein,Mandino Reinhardt,Joseph "Nin-Nin" Reinhardt(Django's brother),Patotte Bousquet,Tchan-Tchou Vidal,the Ferret brothers (or Boulou and Elios Ferré,Matlo's sons),and great waltzes accordeon players,like Gus Viseur,Tony Murena or Emile Carrara."