Toots Thielemans

~ Person

Legal name: Jean Thielemans


Jean-Baptiste Frédéric Isidor, Baron Thielemans (29 April 1922 – 22 August 2016), known professionally as Toots Thielemans, was a Belgian and American jazz musician. He was known for his harmonica playing, as well as his guitar, whistling skills, and composing.

His first professional performances were with Benny Goodman's band when they toured Europe in 1949 and 1950. He emigrated to the U.S. in 1951, becoming a citizen in 1957. From 1953 to 1959 he played with George Shearing, and then led his own groups on tours in the U.S. and Europe. In 1961 he recorded and performed live one of his own compositions, "Bluesette", which featured him playing guitar and whistling. In the 1970s and 1980s, he continued touring and recording, appearing with musicians such as Oscar Peterson, Bill Evans, Dizzy Gillespie, Kenny Werner, Pat Metheny, Jaco Pastorius, Elis Regina and Paquito D'Rivera.

Among the film soundtracks that Thielemans recorded, are The Pawnbroker (1964), Midnight Cowboy (1969), Cinderella Liberty (1973), The Sugarland Express (1974) and Looking for Mr. Goodbar (1977). His harmonica theme song for the popular Sesame Street TV show was heard for 40 years. He often performed and recorded with Quincy Jones, who once called him "one of the greatest musicians of our time." In 2009 he was designated a Jazz Master by The National Endowment for the Arts, the highest honor for a jazz musician in the United States.

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Year Title Artist RatingReleases
1955 The Sound: The Amazing Jean "Toots" Thielemans Toots Thielemans 1
1964 The Whistler and His Guitar Toots Thielemans 1
1969 Aquarela do Brasil Toots Thielemans & Elis Regina 4
1974 Live Toots Thielemans 1
1978 Affinity Bill Evans & Toots Thielemans 2
1981 When I See You Bill Ramsey & Toots Thielemans 2
1985 Apple Dimple Toots Thielemans 2
1985 Toots Thielemans/Philip Catherine and friends Toots Thielemans 1
1988 Only Trust Your Heart Toots Thielemans 2
1990 Footprints Toots Thielemans 1
1991 For My Lady Toots Thielemans 2
1992 Compact Jazz: Toots Thielemans Toots Thielemans 1
1992 Red Square Blue: Jazz Impressions of Russian Composers Fred Hersch, James Newton, Toots Thielemans, Phil Woods, Erik Friedlander, Steve LaSpina & Jeff Hirshfield 1
1992 The Brasil Project Toots Thielemans 1
1993 The Brasil Project, Volume II Toots Thielemans 1
1994 Bluesette Toots Thielemans 1
1994 East Coast West Coast Toots Thielemans 1
1994 Collage Toots Thielemans 1
1998 Chez Toots Toots Thielemans 1
1998 Penthouse Serenade Toots Thielemans 1
1999 Toots! Toots Thielemans 2
2000 The Best of Toots Thielemans Toots Thielemans 1
2000 Jazz in Paris: Blues pour Flirter Toots Thielemans 3
2001 Toots Tielemans & Kenny Werner Toots Thielemans, Kenny Werner 1
2003 Just Friends Toots Thielemans, Johnny Teupen & Paul Kuhn 1
2006 One More for the Road Toots Thielemans 1
2006 Man Bites Harmonica! Toots Thielemans 1
2008 Christian Escoudé Group Christian Escoudé Group feat. Toots Thielemans 1
2010 European Quartet Live Toots Thielemans 1
Airegin Toots Thielemans 1
Bringing it Together Stéphane Grappelli & Toots Thielemans 1
Midnight Cowboy Toots Thielemans 1
TOOTS 75 The Birthday Album Toots Thielemans 1

Album + Compilation

Year Title Artist RatingReleases
1985 The Silver Collection Toots Thielemans 1
1985 The Silver Collection Toots Thielemans 1
1987 Ne Me Quitte Pas / Do Not Leave Me Toots Thielemans 1
1995 Toots in Sweden Toots Thielemans 1
1995 Toots Thielemans 1955-1957 Toots Thielemans 1
1996 Verve Jazz Masters 59 Toots Thielemans 1
2000 The Very Best Of (Hard to Say Goodbye) Toots Thielemans 1
2001 Bluesette Toots Thielemans 1
2001 Quiet Evenings Toots Thielemans 1
2004 Toots Blues 1950-1952 Toots Thielemans & Les Thompson 1
2009 Fender Rhodes Rob Franken Featuring Jimmy Owens, Clark Terry, Ernie Wilkins & Jean 'Toots' Thielemans 1
2012 The Best Of Toots Thielemans 1
2012 The Best Of Toots Thielemans 1
The Sound of Toots Thielemans With the Bert Paige Orchestra Toots Thielemans 1

Album + Live

Year Title Artist RatingReleases
1982 Live in the Netherlands Toots Thielemans, Joe Pass & Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen 1
1995 Concerto Pour Harmonica Toots Thielemans, Fred Hersch, Big Band de Lausanne & Orchestre de Chambre de Lausanne 1
Live Toots Thielemans 1
Ne Me Quitte Pas: Live in Brussels Toots Thielemans 1
The Live Takes, Volume 1 Toots Thielemans 1

Other + Compilation

Year Title Artist RatingReleases
1995 Yesterday & Today Toots Thielemans 1

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