Django, Baro, and Gangsters

DjangoBooksDjangoBooks Seattle✭✭✭ All of them!
edited September 2014 in Photos Posts: 415

imageDjango’s Pictorial Legacy: The TWA Photos

By Roger Baxter There is no reason to believe that Django Reinhardt was a particularly unlawful individual. We do know that he boasted of teaching Babik to shoplift and according to Stephane Grappelli, he was very adept at catching and wringing the necks of chickens on country walks, but these could leniently be considered only relatively minor misdemeanours. He was much too interested in music, women and gambling to be heavily involved in any major criminal activity although it has been claimed that he often cheated at billiards and cards. Despite such indiscretions, I do not think he should be viewed as a thief in the classic sense but more a somewhat eccentric man whose upbringing gave him a very flexible attitude to possessions.

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  • MichaelHorowitzMichaelHorowitz SeattleAdministrator
    Posts: 5,868
    You couldn't make this up, Baro and the musette mafia would give the Sopranos a run for their money!
  • pickitjohnpickitjohn South Texas Corpus, San Antonio, AustinVirtuoso Patenotte 260
    Posts: 936
    Great read and pictures Thanks for the post @MichaelHorowitz

    pick on

    pickitjohn :peace:
  • MichaelHorowitzMichaelHorowitz SeattleAdministrator
    Posts: 5,868
    @pickitjohn don't thank me, thank Roger who wrote the piece and selected the photos.
  • spatzospatzo Virtuoso
    Posts: 725
  • Teddy DupontTeddy Dupont Deity
    Posts: 1,171
    Thanks Spatzo. Not sure whether the lack of comments means a lack of interest.
  • Posts: 2,692
    Oh I doubt it. I myself just didn't have the time yet to read a lengthy article. But I have an itch to do so and can't wait.
    Every note wants to go somewhere-Kurt Rosenwinkel
  • Svanis1337Svanis1337 ✭✭✭
    edited October 2014 Posts: 424
    Fantastic article. I read it all of course. I think it's spot on. Maybe it's time to write a new book on Django & C:o? :peace:
  • Teddy DupontTeddy Dupont Deity
    Posts: 1,171
    Thanks Svanis. Glad you enjoyed it. I enjoyed writing this one. Initially it was only going to be about the three Baro opening photos and it grew.
  • Ted GottsegenTed Gottsegen Rowayton, CTModerator
    Posts: 615
    Roger, thanks for this great article! Here's a little more info on this topic which I've been slowly compiling into an article of my own which I never seem to get any time

    I went to the address of what was La Lanterne and had an interesting experience. From the exterior the place looks like an abandoned store front. Looking inside (through breaks in the blinds) I was barely able to identify four or five doors, one right next to the other on either side of the hallway. When the proprietor saw me moving up and down at different angles trying to get a better idea of what was on the interior, they were a little uncomfortable. The proprietor was very reluctant to speak with me but humored me by vaguely answering my questions. The answers that were given to my questions made such little sense when compared to what I already knew and surmised from the inside of the building that I suspect the property has remained in the 'organization' and is still in use to some nefarious activity today. I learned from a friend of mine who is a prosecuting attorney and his father who was in the homicide and now parole departments in Massachusetts that when it comes to interviewing people its easy to find out just as much from a reluctant -vs- voluntary interviewee. It's all in the questions being asked.

    To attest to Baro's (at times) frightening demeanor, most people are aware that Jacques Montagne was apart of Baro's organizations and took them over when Baro died at his home in Clichy (this was confirmed by a member of the family). A friend of Jacques' told me once that he got really angry one night, turned to this person and said 'I can take you with my friends and kill you. You wouldn't be able to stop me and no one could do anything about it'. This was made to a friend so imagine what the response would've been to someone who wasn't......

    Jazz music in all it's forms has always had a close association with people on the opposite side of the law. Bousquet and Cardi played at 'Au Son des Guitares' in Marseille for many years. This club was the base of the Corsican mafia in Marseille which was the same group that were responsible for the drug smuggling scandal that was turned into the film "The French Connection" in the 1960's.
  • MichaelHorowitzMichaelHorowitz SeattleAdministrator
    Posts: 5,868
    Thanks Spatzo. Not sure whether the lack of comments means a lack of interest.

    The announcement of your blog post reached over 500 people on Facebook in a day which is the most I've ever seen. It will also be announced in the DjangoBooks monthly email which goes out to nearly 20,000 people. Don't worry, it's getting plenty of views! I think we'll get more feedback over the coming weeks. thanks again for submitting it....

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