Toots Thielemans on writing "Bluesette"

Now, A Jazz Moment...

Toots Thielemans: It happened to me. You don't write a song like Bluesette, (Plays melody on harmonica) That is the nucleus of the song.

In 1962, NEA Jazz Master Toots Thielemans composed his best-known composition "Bluesette". He credits the great french violinist Stephane Grapelli as his inspiration. The melody came to Toots as he warmed up for a concert in his dressing room, which he shared that night with Grapelli.

Toots Thielemans: He was my idol all the time of course, but I never had played with him. And here I am with my idol and he was so elegant. "Mon petit Toots!" And then I warm up on the chords of Bluesette. See, there's always somewhere, somebody to help you, right? Stephane inspiring me.

MUSIC: "Bluesette" (Xfade to CD version featuring guitar and whistling), CD: Verve Jazz Masters 59: Toots Thielemans , Verve 314535271-2 (cut 8)

This Jazz Moment with guitarist, whistler, and harmonica virtuoso Toots Thielemans was created by the National Endowment for the Arts.

Toots Thielemans on writing "Bluesette"