Jean Freber

Acordeon de Paris

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Unfortunately, the anonymous postcard packaging of Acordeon de Paris reveals nothing of the brilliance and pure joy to be found on this collection of accordion music by master Jean Freber. Recording in the '50s with a band of crack jazzmen, Freber runs through 12 songs by the Mexican bolero king, Agustin Lara, and liberally translates them into Parisian café classics. Freber and his group are capable of evoking the Riviera ("Noche de Ronda") or Bourbon Street ("Azul") or the Bowery ("Mujer") at the drop of a hat, and the recording quality is clear and vibrant. Throughout, Freber's accordion playing is stunning, particularly on the upbeat numbers, although his hands are sure on the ballads as well. The highlight, "Solamente una Vez," packs the same sprightly punch as prime Esquivel material.

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