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Rhesus O (1971)

Alain Hatot - soprano, tenor, barytone sax, flûte
Alain Monier - organ, percussion
Jean-Pol Asseline - piano, harpsichord
Francis Moze - bass, xylophone
Serge Lenoir - bass
Guy Pederson - double bass
Thierry Blanchard - drums, percussion
Jean Stout - choir conductor

In the beginning were two musicans Jean-Pol Asselina and Thierry Blanchard. At that time these two jazz lovers, friends, were living in the suburbs of Paris. Along with the bass player Gerard Prevost (future bass player of ZAO) they appear in several successful jazz cincerts, and decide to set up a proper band.

The pianist and organist Alain Monier, a professional musician (who was then, with Gerard Prevost, the accompanist of the singer Fridda Boccara), joins them, and so does Alain Hatot, a saxophonist of "big bands" (Claude Cagnasso, Yvan Julien. Serge Lenoir will take the place of Gerard Prevost. The band is called then Cigue.

Essentially inspired by the music of Ravel. Debussy, Miles Davis, John Coltrane and Soft Machine, away from the rest of the world, in Alain Monier's family house in Arromanhes (Port Winston!), both Alain Monier and Jean-Pol Asseline compose, facing the sea which will be their main source of inspiration. The band will have its first rehearsals in the cellar of Alain's parents, premises strategically situated in the very heart of Paris, opposite to the "Odeon Metro".

Then will follow a series of concerts and particularly in Paris in 1970 at "Gibus", where Claude Delcloo (former jazz drummer and artistuc director of CBS) notices the band who signs a contract for a long-playing record, under a nwe name: RHESUS O.

Afraid of missing recording sessions because of his national service, Serge Lenoir gets Francis Moze (bass player of Magma) to rehearse in his place. After unforgettable rehearsals at "La Cave" in Saint-Germain, the band eventually moves to the studio at the famous "Chateau d'Herouville" near Paris, mythical studio where recorded at that time. Serge Lenoir will eventually shave the bass with Francis Moze; playing the double bass, a famous guest Guy Pedersen (ex-accompanist of Baden Powell). The choirs conducted by Jean Stout will appear on this album (most of them being ex-Double Six).

On September 1971 the album, whose first title is "Cigue", in memory of their previous name, is released on Epic (CBS label). It enjoys favourable review in specialized newspapers (Extra, Rock & Folk...) [...] ---- Alain Juliac

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