Quintette du Hot Club de France

Formed 1934. Disbanded 1948.

Biography

Quintette du Hot Club de France, short: “QdHCdF” (“The Quintet of the Hot Club of France”) was a jazz group founded in France in 1934 by guitarist Django Reinhardt and violinist Stéphane Grappelli, and active in one form or another until 1948.

One of the earliest and most significant continental jazz groups in Europe, the Quintette was described by critic Thom Jurek as "one of the most original bands in the history of recorded jazz." Their most famous lineup featured Reinhardt, Grappelli, bassist Louis Vola, and rhythm guitarists Roger Chaput and Joseph Reinhardt (Django's brother) who filled out the ensemble's sound and added occasional percussive effects.

There are several versions of how the band was formed. The most generally accepted version amongst modern jazz historians is that the group evolved from a series of backstage jams led by Django Reinhardt, with Stephane Grappelli. However, bassist Louis Vola said in an interview that he found the Reinhardt brothers playing on a beach at Toulon. He invited them to jam with his own band.

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