Pierre Michelot

Pierre Michelot (3 March 1928 – 3 July 2005) was a French bebop and hard bop double bass player and arranger.

Pierre Michelot
Born(1928-03-03)March 3, 1928
Saint-Denis, Seine-Saint-Denis, Paris, France
DiedJuly 3, 2005(2005-07-03) (aged 77)
Paris, France
GenresBebop, hard bop
  • Musician
  • arranger
InstrumentsDouble bass
Associated actsMiles Davis

Early life

Michelot was born in Saint-Denis, Seine-Saint-Denis, Paris on 3 March 1928.[1] He studied piano from 1936 until 1938. He switched to playing bass at the age of sixteen.[1]

Later life and career

He played and recorded with visiting American musicians in Paris.[1] He "played with Rex Stewart (1948), performed at Frisco's in Paris with Kenny Clarke (summer 1949), and joined Clarke in a band accompanying Coleman Hawkins (winter 1949–50), with whom he recorded; in 1949 he also recorded with Clarke in an ad hoc band led by Sidney Bechet."[2]

Through his career he played with Django Reinhardt, Stéphane Grappelli, Don Byas, Thelonious Monk, Lester Young, Dexter Gordon, Stan Getz, Bud Powell, Zoot Sims, Dizzy Gillespie, Chet Baker and many others.

Together with Miles Davis, he was responsible for the 1957 soundtrack of Ascenseur pour l'échafaud.[2] He was a member of the Jacques Loussier Trio, known for the Play Bach album series from 1959.[2]

For two decades from the early 1960s Michelot concentrated on arranging and studio work.[1] He also appeared in the 1986 film Round Midnight.[2]

In later life, Michelot suffered from Alzheimer's disease. He died in Paris on 3 July 2005.[2]


As leader

  • HUM (Sketch, 1960)
  • Jazz at the Blue Note (Mercury, 1961)
  • Round About a Bass (Sunnyside Communications, 1963)
  • Bass and Bosses (Emarcy, 1989)
  • Live at the Village Vanguard (Universal Distribution, 2007)

As sideman

With Clifford Brown

With Miles Davis

With Dexter Gordon

With John Lewis & Sacha Distel

With Jimmy Raney


  1. Carr, Ian; Fairweather, Digby; Priestley, Brian (1995). Jazz: The Rough Guide. Rough Guides. p. 437. ISBN 978-1-85828-137-7.
  2. Clergeat, André; Kernfeld, Barry (2002), Michelot, Pierre, Grove Music Online. Oxford Music Online. Oxford University Press, doi:10.1093/gmo/9781561592630.article.J299700

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