Orchestre de Biguine / Album d'Or de la Biguine
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Album d'Or de la Biguine (Fremeaux Associes)

Dance-music from Guadeloupe by Orchestre Traditionnel De La Guadeloupe , Maurice Edouard , Lirvat Al , Brisacier Joseph , Stellio Alexandre , Ensemble De Quadrille Guadeloupéen. These recordings of this important folkloric heritage used sixties and early seventies- era studio technology that was quite superior to the material used to produce the 78's of previous decades. As a result, the record has already become a cult biguine-album for a new generation.


More info:
1. Nous les cuisinières (Édouard Maurice) 4’43
2. Guadeloupe an nous (Al Lirvat, Robert Mavounzy) 4’39
3. Moune a ou cé Moune a ou (Al Lirvat) 3’24
4. Cé Biguine (Traditionnel) 3’12
5. Ti doudou an moin (D.R.) 3’39
6. Ninon (Joseph Brisacier) 3’42
7. Mon Automobile (D.R.) 3’04
8. Serpent Maigre (Alexandre Stellio) 3’38
9. Touloulou (Al Lirvat) 3’32
10. Doudou pas pleuré (Al Lirvat) 3’22
11. Chauffé biguine la (Robert Mavounzy, Al Lirvat) 4’33
12. Adieu foulards, adieu madras (Traditionnel) 3’34
13. Pantalon (Traditionnel) 2’59
14. L’été (Traditionnel) 5’14
15. La poule (Traditionnel) 5’02
16. Pastourelle (Traditionnel) 5’16.

The Orchestre Traditionnel De La Guadeloupe was led by clarinettist and occasional soprano saxman and singer Robert Mavounzy, who has appeared in these pages before as a bebop-flavoured saxophonist in France immediately after the Second World War. He moved back to his native island of Guadeloupe in 1964. In 1966 Roger Fanfant died — he had been a prime mover in the modernisation of the biguine — and record producer Raymond Célini decided to make a tribute album, recreating some of the hits Fanfant has enjoyed in the thirties, when Mavounzy had been part of his ensemble. The saxman also recalled other material during the session so that the album includes remakes of items such as the beguine pioneer Stellio’s « Serpent Maigre » and some of the bebop-inflected biguine of Al Lirvat. There is also « Cé Biguine », based on Lionel Belasco’s « Bajan Girl » of 1915. Along with a cooking little rhythm section and the occasional vocals of Manuela Pioche, the excellent jazz pianist Alain Jean-Marie helps push thing along in an authentic manner that is a joy from beginning to end.… But though the twelve tracks may mark the end of original album, that’s not quite all there is on this CD. The quadrille pops up in 18th century slave narratives from all over, and is still extant in Guadeloupe, where the Ensemble de Quadrille Guadeloupéen was recorded in 1972. The self-taught Élie Cologer, born in 1911, was, according to the notes, the last quadrille violinist on the island (accordion has now taken over the lead role), and these four titles by his outfit are fascinating. Guitar and bass add a slightly more modern feel, but not enough to interfere with the music at all — the fiddle, percussion, and caller won’t let them. If you want a reference point, there do seem to be slight similarities with zydeco fiddle (from my admittedly limited experience!). Is there any more of this material? To sum up then, a wonderful CD of older Caribbean styles — thanks Frémeaux. - By Norman Darwen - BLUES & RHYTHM

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