4 September 1966, Saverne, Alsace, France. The son of Fiso Lagrène, a popular guitarist in pre-war France, Lagrène displayed a prodigious talent as a very young child. Born into a gypsy community, his origins and his fleet, inventive playing style inevitably generated comparisons with Django Reinhardt. In 1978, he won a prize at a festival at Strasbourg and subsequently made a big impact during a televised gypsy festival. In his early teenage years Lagrène toured extensively playing concerts and festivals across Europe, often accompanying distinguished jazz artists such as Benny Carter, Benny Goodman, Stéphane Grappelli and Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen. He also made his first album Routes To Django, which helped to prove that early estimates of his capabilities were not excessive.
An outstanding technician, Lagrène has revealed influences other than Reinhardt, happily incorporating bebop phraseology,...
Read the Full Biography of Bireli Lagrene
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