Bolling’s fusion of jazz and classical made him the most popular pianist, composer, and bandleader in Europe for a time. “A devotee since childhood of Duke Ellington, Fats Waller and other eminences of American jazz, Mr. Bolling grew up listening to their music on the radio until World War II intervened. ‘Jazz was all but banned by the Nazis in my country,’ he told the Hartford Courant. ‘So I got most of my jazz from 78 rpm recordings.’ Mr. Bolling said Ellington took him in ‘as part of his family’ when they met in the 1960s, by which time the Frenchman had embarked on his career as a bandleader.” – Washington Post

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