Pierre Michelot was one of the very best jazz bassists in Europe, though few fans think of him as a bandleader, composer, or arranger. This reissue of an LP made for Mercury dates from 1963, where Michelot is joined by some of the top players on the continent. In addition to fresh arrangements of standard fare like "Cherokee" and "Bye, Bye Blackbird," the leader penned five compositions, including the tasty blues "Akkilino," which is an extended feature for his bass and Roger Guerin's muted trumpet. "Elephant Green" showcases flutist Raymond Guiot and Pierre Gossez's robust baritone saxophone in a melancholy ballad setting. Like many of Verve's Jazz in Paris CD reissues, this recording is a sleeper that is well worth acquiring, even if its running time is a tad miserly at around 32 minutes.
Between the early 16th and the middle of the 17th century, as the lute reached its zenith as a solo and accompanying instrument throughout Europe, Pierre Attaingnant, Adrian LeRoy, and the Ballard family dominated the business of printing music in France. The chansons and airs de cour they published and, in many cases, composed combined exquisite poetry with both polyphonic and homophonic lute accompaniments, yielding some of the most affecting and artful expressions of love ever composed.