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Django Reinhardt

Jean Baptiste "Django" Reinhardt (January 23, 1910 – May 16, 1953) was a Belgian Roma jazz musician. He was one of the first important jazz musicians to be born in Europe, and one of the most important jazz guitarists of all time. His most renowned tunes include "Minor Swing", "Tears", "Belleville" and "Nuages" (French, meaning "Clouds"). Django is pronounced jang go.

Born in Liberchies, Pont-à-Celles, Belgium, Reinhardt spent most of his youth in Basque gypsy encampments close to Paris, playing banjo, guitar and violin from an early age professionally at dance halls in Paris. He started first on the violin and eventually moved on to a banjo-guitar that had been given to him, and his first known recordings (in 1928) were of him playing the banjo (a banjo guitar has either 4 or 5 strings. The 5-string banjo is tuned to a first inversion G major chord 1st string - D 2nd string - B 3rd string - G 4th string - D 5th string - G). At the age of 18, Reinhardt was injured in a fire that ravaged the caravan he shared with Bella, his first wife. She made imitation flowers out of c...

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