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Dorado Schmitt Quintet: Dorado Sings

- CD Reviews

Dorado Schmitt Quintet: Dorado Sings

Dorado Schmitt on vocals and guitar
Pierre-Alain Goualch on piano
Ludovic Beier on accordion
Gautier Laurent on double bass
Franck Agulhon on drums

Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower
December 11, 2005

(See Dorado Schmitt in NYC Django Reinhardt Festivals and Concerts).

This CD is an eclectic mix of Dorado Schmitt’s compositions for vocals and band, including Dorado singing with his guitar, as well as Dorado’s instrumental songs, one song by César Portillo de la Luz, and one by Dorado and Ludovic Beier. The final song, Ah Mon Enfant, seems to be dedicated to Dorado’s son, Samson, who is fast becoming a renowned gypsy guitarist in his own right and a mainstay in Dorado’s traveling bands. There’s no signature Gypsy Jazz here, but, rather, rapturous songs for romance or dance.

Notable tracks:

#3 –Sad and Beautiful – Composed by Dorado Schmitt and Ludovic Beier. Pierre Blanchard and an ensemble of violins have participated in this one track in an elegant fusion of orchestral effects. Dorado and Ludovic have composed a slow, melancholy song, with Dorado’s misty lyrics about a “bleeding heart”. Pierre-Alain Goualch takes generous keyboard solos, as does Franck Agulhon on smooth brushes.

#5 –Samba Dorado – Composed by Dorado Schmitt. This instrumental piece is a dervish of a Samba, with Ludovic leading on his wild accordion, Dorado following on rapid, acoustic guitar, and Franck keeping beat on cymbals and drums, along with Gautier Laurent on earthy bass. Dorado generates scintillating sound, as always, with echoing and electrifying energy on his resonant strings.

#7 –Le Swing – Composed by Dorado Schmitt. Who would think that a vocal, French Swing would be this enchanting? Perhaps Aznavour would come to mind. Steady brushes and guitar lead this rhythmic song, and the vocals begin quickly. This time Dorado’s “heart sings”. This composer has no need for all instruments in all songs, even vocals, and thus there’s uniqueness to each track, which this time is minus the accordion.

#9 –Raiza Ouna Endo – Composed by Dorado Schmitt. One of my favorite tracks, this instrumental song features Ludovic in his virtuosic display of lightning keyboard frill and his sexy, even atonal flourishes, merging into or with Dorado’s gyrating guitar strings, followed by Goualch’s rippling piano. The piece ends on a staccato fusion of guitar, accordion, bass, drums, and piano.

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For more information, contact Dr. Roberta E. Zlokower at