“Fats” Sadi Pol Lallemand, was born in Andenne, Belgium, October 23, 1927. He chose the name “Sadi” because he disliked his last name, which means “the German” in French. From the age of 10 he presented a xylophone act as an attraction in circuses and in music halls.
He fell in love with the swing music of Louis Armstrong in his early teens and, after hearing Lionel Hampton, switched to the vibraphone. Due to his technique and modern approach, Sadi was the quintessential European vibraphonist of the 50s. In his beginnings, his style was indebted to Hampton, but as he assimilated the irresistible and evolving influence of Milt Jackson, his music became a true reflection of himself, generous and overflowing with swing.
Upon his arrival in Paris in 1951, Sadi had a hard time finding gigs as a jazzman. There were too many musicians chasing too fewj obs and at first he had to work in all...