It was sad to get the news last week that two guitarists who had accompanied the late Stephane Grappelli had passed away. Diz Disley was a versatile Django Reinhardt-inspired player who moved comfortably between concert stage, jazz club and folk club. It was his invitation to Grappelli to join him for a Cambridge Folk Festival in the early 1970s that motivated the great violinist to go back on the road with his fiddle after a lull in his performing career during which he worked in Paris as a cocktail pianist. Disley, who was born in 1931, played with many of the leading figures in British jazz of his generation including Ken Colyer, Mick Mulligan, George Melly, Sandy Brown, Chris Barber and Kenny Ball, as well as leading his own bands and sitting in with visiting American musicians, including Louis Armstrong. 'Gypsy jazz' has since grown considerably as a movement outside the Romany world, but at the time Disley hooked up with Grappelli the violinist could not find non-gypsy players able to play Django-style guitar parts, and the gypsy players - like Reinhardt - were less than 100 per cent reliable in showing up for gigs. Disley had his reliability issues and substance abuse problems but when on form he was an inspiring player who swung hard. Herb Ellis also had that quality. 'If you're not swinging, he's gonna make you swing,' songwriter-guitarist Les Paul said. 'Of the whole bunch of guys who play hollow-body guitar I think Herb Ellis has the most drive.' Ellis, born in 1921, was the last survivor of a generation of US jazz guitar giants following on from Charlie Christian that included his partners in the Great Guitars Trio, Barney Kessel and Charlie Byrd, and his frequent sparring partner Joe Pass. He had a long association with Oscar Peterson of whose trio he was a member from 1953 to 1958, and it was with Peterson that he backed Grappelli and fellow jazz fiddler Stuff Smith on the 1957 Violins No End album. I don't know if trombonist Mike Zwerin, who had also just checked out, ever played with Grappelli - as a longtime resident of Paris who kept his instrumental skills honed he might have done - but as the city's pre-eminent jazz scribe he wrote about him, as he did about innumerable aspects of jazz and popular music to which he had a critical but open ear. Zwerin was a perceptive, witty and thought-provoking commentator for a wide range of publications and also wrote a number of books, including Swing Under the Nazis: Jazz as a Metaphor for Freedom. Interesting gigs this week include the monthly Big Band Session at Ned Kelly's Last Stand today at 6pm. Grappa's Cellar regulars The Stray Katz Big Band are guests. At Grappa's on Wednesday at 8pm the Victoria Jazz Band appear. On Saturday blues rock trio Diving for Air play the Fringe Club, sharing the bill with Celtic folkies Bahouki and the country-flavoured Curs. Billed as an evening of 'Swamp Music', proceedings start at 10.30pm and tickets are HK$120 in advance or HK$125 on the night. On the same night at 10pm, Canto-pop producer turned jazz singer Hanjin Tan perform his unique brand of 'Raw Jazz' in an acoustic trio format at Backstage Live. Admission is HK$200.