The Jaguars were a mainly instrumental group formed in the Saguenay area of Quebec in 1962. They quickly became the kings of the French Canadian rock 'n roll scene due to the creative and experimental style of their lead guitar player Arthur Cossette, who's real name is actually Jean Guy! He pierced his speakers to create his own distortion and fuzz sounds, which he blended into sweet sounds, prefering the melodic tones of the Shadows to the gnarly tuffness of Link Wray.Like most Quebecoise groups, Les Jaguars have remained a "local" group, becoming popular only in their region and prefering to play dances and hotels (in many of the smaller towns in Quebec, the only nightclubs were found in hotels) in the outlying areas of the province. At first, the Jaguars mixed their twang with horns and trumpets, due to the popularity of dance bands. But they soon gained a great following, and were able to continue playing in a pure rock 'n roll style!
Supersonic Recording Stars!
Because the Jaguars music was primarily meant for dancing, their Shadowesque sounds were a little raunchier than many of their French Canadian contemporaries. Songs like " Supersonic Twist", their first 45 mix a little bit of rhythm and blues raunch to create a dance floor grind. But their best and most frantic abrupt picking found it's way on the incredible "Jaguar Shake" ---- which featured a guitar attack as savage as their Cheetah print suits!
Their great selling singles promted their record label to record an LP packed with a few outstanding covers, and their trademark creative originals, which set them way above the rest of the pack! It featured tunes like "Guitar Jet" on which Arthur trades in his innocent staccato for the SEXIEST reverbed sound ever to come out of a guitar!!! Shortly after the LP was released in 1964. The fabulous LP lead to a busy year and the group continued to play thoughout the province. But in 1965, it began to become clear that vocal rock 'n roll was becoming increasingly more popular. Although the Jaguars continued to record for Tournesol, even releasing a second LP, their audience was thinning By 1966 it was clear that the band needed to either change their style, or disband. Sadly, in the Spring of 1966, the Jaguars called it quits.
Jean Guy continued to play rock 'n roll, but adopted the image of "Arthur" a crazy long haired, flowered hipster pants wearing garage band weirdo! He released one quirky solo single, and then joined Les Sinners upon the death of their lead guitar player! The Jaguars name has been resurrected several times by Arthur, and are currently playing in Quebec again. Their post 60's material is different (the Jaguars hits have been re-recorded several times) from their old sound.