Listen To:

Selected MP3s of guitar instrumentals, jazz, big band, and classic easy listening from the original vinyl.

Welcome to Guitars & All That Jazz

Welcome to Guitars & All That Jazz

Guitars & All That Jazz was a radio station that webcast via Live365 for 11 years, ending in June 2011. The playlist consisted of guitar instrumentals, jazz, big band, early rock 'n' roll, lounge music and classic easy listening.

I hope to share some of this music with you via this blog. Most of it will be taken from the original vinyl (LPs and 45s) , cassettes and the occasional commercially unavailable CD.

Here's hoping you'll find something to enjoy. Please note files are available only for a limited time.

I urge you to purchase the digital version of the albums featured, either on CD or via download, wherever possible.

Listen to the Music
There are now two music streams. Click the appropriate player to the right.
1. Guitars & All That Jazz: Five hours of the best in jazz, guitars and other instrumental gems. New songs are added weekly.
2. Tiki Shores: Music to sweep you away to a tropical isle, a South American dance floor or a bossa nova on the beach at Rio. About 4.5 hours of classic exotica music, Latin rhythms and bossa nova.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Les Fingers - Telstar (EP)

Les Fingers was a French instrumental band of the 1960s whose sound was influenced by Britain's The Shadows and to a lesser extent, The Ventures from the U.S.

The group got together in 1962, with Jean-Claude Olivier on lead guitar, Marcel Bourdon on rhythm guitar, Yvon Rioland, bass guitar, and Jean-Marie Hauser, drums. Olivier and Bourdon stayed with the band throughout the '60s.

Many of the tracks by Les Fingers were covers of popular hits or adaptations of folk songs. The EP pictured above was among their earliest releases, coming out in '62. The main attraction was Telstar, a cover of the Tornados' recent hit. Then there is a tune called Les Cavaliers du Feu (Riders of Fire), as it says on the front cover, or Les Cavaliers du Ciel (Riders in or of the Sky), as it's listed on the back.

In any case this does not sound to me like the familiar Ghost Riders in the Sky, popularized in the 1940s by Vaughan Monroe, and revived in the '60s by the Ramrods as an instrumental. The Les Fingers tune certainly bears a strong stylistic and thematic resemblance to the more familiar number, however.

Les Cavaliers du Ciel

For comparison's sake here's the Ramrods doing Ghost Riders in the Sky.

In 2005 Magic Records of France released a double-CD set by Les Fingers entitled Complete 60s Instrumentals. This was available only for a brief period and now commands anywhere from $35 to $80 for a copy. None of this great French band's material appears to be available as a legal download.

Apparently Les Fingers' biggest hit was something called Special Bluejeans. I'm not sure what all the pinup girls have to do with the subject at hand as none of them appears to be wearing jeans. Probably best not to view this video at work.

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