“Lockwood established his own musical identity long ago” The New York City Jazz Record

“Didier Lockwood, who turns 60 this month, counts late violin master Stéphane Grappelli among his influences, though Lockwood established his own musical identity long ago. For this tribute, Lockwood utilizes a constantly shifting supporting cast of veterans and others deserving wider international recognition, with most of the 18 selections pieces Grappelli recorded or performed during his career.
For much of his Gypsy-flavored rendition of “Night and Day” Lockwood emulates a whistler with his violin, though he swings quite nicely, complemented by Romane’s Django-inspired guitar solo. Lockwood opts for subtlety in his approach to “Tea For Two”, playing a spacious duet with guitarist Sylvain Luc. Pianist Martial Solal is his partner for the darting take of “C’est Si Bon” while the rhythm section is anchored by the underrated veteran pianist René Urtreger in an explosive take of “Just One of Those Things”, featuring some of Lockwood’s best work on this release.
Guitarist Martin Taylor toured and recorded extensively with Grappelli, so he is a perfect match, in addition to bassist Jean-Philippe Viret, for an intimate interpretation of “Someone To Watch Over Me”. Another Grappelli sideman, guitarist Marc Fosset, is on hand for a hard-charging take of “Honeysuckle Rose”, the leader acknowledging the late master by replicating his trademarked end-of-phrase high notes. Lockwood’s choice of a slow tempo for “As Time Goes By” enhances its lyricism and showcases harmonica master Toots Thielemans.
Like Grappelli, Lockwood delights in sharing the spotlight with a fellow violinist, trading hot licks with Fiona Monbet in a rousing “Tiger Rag” or with Pierre Blanchard in the leader’s Baroque-flavored “Jazzuetto”. Of course, it’s hard for Lockwood to restrain himself from showing off his virtuoso chops as in his solo feature of 19th century classical violin great Niccolò Paganini’s “Mouvement Perpétuel”. Disc 2 was obviously made for European audiences; the interviews with Lockwood, Grappelli and documentary footage are all in French, as are the PDF documents, The two stand-alone audio tracks have nothing to do with the tribute: “Solo Globe-trotter” is a lively overdubbed raga while “Bossa For Didier” is an easygoing affair with bass and guitar.”