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By Thierry Loreau & Pierre Barré


Everyone knows Toots Thielemans, the musician who won the world over with his harmonica, his unique smile and his famous song “Bluesette”. Yet few know who he really is. His life is extraordinary – from his childhood in the Marolles, a working-class neighbourhood in Brussels, to the full house at Carnegie Hall in New York at the age of 84 in 2006.


The film will go back over the main stages of his life, whether they are musical ones or simply human ones because, above all, Toots is a warm, sincere and unpretentious man, even though he can pride himself on having been given the title of baron several years ago.

During this rich and full life, he accomplished the American dream by moving to the United States. He rubbed shoulders with the greatest musicians of his time and he became a living legend in many countries. It was a pleasure for him to try all kinds of music, from blues to jazz, from musette to Brazilian music, from pop to funk and from film scores to music for commercials. 

Toots will tell his own story over an alternation of archive images and current images. It’s clearly not retirement time for this tireless man. His head is full of projects, for his greatest pleasure is to pass on his emotions and energy to those who listen to him.

A coproduction Les Films de la Passerelle, RTBF, Exqi culture, VRT,

Uncle Jazz Productions

Technical sheet
Year: 2008
Duration: 52' - 63'
Language: French
Direction: Thierry Loreau & Pierre Barré
Cinematography: Didier Hill-Derive
Sound: Victor Vanderslagmolen
Editing: Pieter Peeters
Christine Pireaux - Les Films de la Passerelle
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