Postwar Recordings 1944-1953
contains 106 tracks, spread out over five CDs, tracing the complete postwar recordings of Gypsy guitarist Django Reinhardt. These sides highlight the guitarist's later stages of development, embracing bebop and the electric guitar. Reinhardt is also reunited with violinist Stéphane Grappelli, picking up where they left off before the war. By the fifth disc it's apparent Reinhardt was evolving, becoming fatigued with maintaining, exclusively, the prewar music that he created with Grappelli and the Quintette du Hot Club de France. Unfortunately, Reinhardt died before the next stage of his musical transformation was complete, leaving the listener wondering what might have been. Alongside the aforementioned Grappelli are performances featuring such noteworthy musicians as pianist Mel Powell
trumpeter/cornetist Rex Stewart
, drummer Ray McKinley
, clarinetist Peanuts Hucko
, and Grappelli's replacement in the Hot Club, Hubert Rostaing
. As always, JSP does an admirable job remastering the tracks, providing recording dates and detailed liner notes, and separating the discs into specific years.