Toots Thielemans

Category:groep / artiest, muzikant
Brussel, 29.04.1922 - Braine-l'Alleud, 22.08.2016
Genre(s):Jazz
Instrument(s):gitaar, mondharmonica

Short description

Living legend Toots Thielemans is credited by jazz aficionados and jazz critics as being among the greatest jazz harmonica players of the 20th and 21st century.

Biography

Harmonica player, guitarist, and whistler Jean-Baptiste "Toots" Thielemans was born April 29, 1922, in Brussels, and has been credited by jazz aficionados and jazz critics as being among the greatest jazz harmonica players of the 20th century.  

Thielemans learned to play the accordion at the age of three, took up chromatic harmonica at 17, and taught himself to play the guitar in the early 1940s. In 1950, he toured Europe as a guitarist with the Benny Goodman Sextet in and then immigrated to the United States the following year, becoming a member of the George Shearing Quintet.  In 1959, Thielemans began working as a freelance, playing and recording with Ella Fitzgerald, Quincy Jones, Bill Evans, Paul Simon, Billy Joel, Astrud Gilberto, and Elis Regina, among others.

In 1962 Thielemans recorded Bluesette using unison whistling and guitar, and ever since has been greatly in demand -- particularly for his harmonica and his whistling -- on pop records and as a jazz soloist. Beginning in the 1970s, Thielemans has made annual trips to Brussels and has appeared as a leader of swing and bop quartets. At the Montreux International Jazz Festival, he recorded as a sideman with Oscar Peterson in 1975, then with Dizzy Gillespie in 1980.

Thielemans's two-volume Brasil Project was popular in the 1990s and found him smoothly interacting on harmonica with top Brazilian musicians. A perennial winner of Down Beat readers and critics poll for "miscellaneous instruments", Thielemans has received many awards and titles including "Chevalier des arts et des letters" in France; Professor Honoris Causa at the two universities of Brussels, Belgium; and in 2001 the Belgian King Albert II honored him with the title "Baron".

Cully 1989 & 1990Cully 1989 & 1990 (2019)
Jazz
Toots Thielemans, Thierry Lang Trio
The nearness of youThe nearness of you (2017)
Jazz
Toots Thielemans
Greatest hitsGreatest hits (2016)
Jazz
Toots Thielemans
Top 40 TootsTop 40 Toots (2016)
Jazz
Toots Thielemans
Live at le ChapiteauLive at le Chapiteau (2012)
Jazz
Toots Thielemans
Bluesette: Man bites harmonica + Road to romanceBluesette: Man bites harmonica + Road to romance (2012)
Jazz
Toots Thielemans
90 Yrs - European Quartet90 Yrs - European Quartet (2012)
Jazz
Toots Thielemans
Toots 90 - The best ofToots 90 - The best of (2012)
Jazz
Toots Thielemans
Yesterday & todayYesterday & today (2012)
Jazz
Toots Thielemans
SummertimeSummertime (2011)
Jazz
Toots Thielemans
Hey 't is Frank!Hey 't is Frank! (2005)
20th century, romanticism, classicism, Popular / light classical music, classical crossover
Frank Vantroyen, Ben Haemhouts, Toots Thielemans, Erik Mast, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Michel Legrand, Antonio Vivaldi, Leroy Anderson (...)
Bach meets Jazz againBach meets Jazz again (2000)
Jazz, 20th century
Marc Matthys, Toots Thielemans, Marc Matthys, Dirk Brossé, Toots Thielemans, Johann Sebastian Bach, Antonio Vivaldi, Kurt Weill (...)
Just between friendsJust between friends (1994)
classical, Jazz
Brussels Concert Band, Jan Ceulemans, Toots Thielemans, Paul Schoovaerts

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Documents:Toots Thielemans (biography)
Knack Extra: Toots 90 (magazine)
Toots 90 (biography)