STANLEY TURRENTINE
                        Blue Flames
                         Recording Date:
                             March 31, 1964

                             Shirley Scott          O
                             Stanley Turrentine TS
                             Bob Cranshaw        B
                             Otis Finch              D

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Another absolute masterpiece from Shirley Scott and Stanley
Turrentine. Unfortunately it is way to short, sadly it also leaves you wanting more. Clocking in at less than 35 minutes, this lp smolders like its name and front cover does imply. Stanley keeps it moving and Shirley comp's so well, and a relentless bass lines of pure taste from Bob and Otis keeps more then a beat, that gells it all together..



                 IRVING MAYFIELD 
                   BILL SUMMERS
                Los Hombres Calientes, v1

                      Recording Date: 
                           March 1998

                           Roland Guerin     B 
                           Rhonda Johnson  Vo
                           Phillip Manuel      Vo 
                           Jason Marsalis     D 
                           Irvin Mayfield      TP 
                           Cyril Neville         BG, Vo 
                           David Pulphus      B 
                           Bill Summers        Per, Vo

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Review by Michael G. Nastos
Hombres Calientes ("The Hot Men") are actually pretty cool. With a spare sound straight out of the Afro-Cuban and jazz traditions, they prove capable of boiling the pot when called upon. They consist of young trumpeter Irvin Mayfield, veteran percussionist Bill Summers, and the youngest member of the Marsalis family, drummer Jason. Bassist David Pulphus, percussionist/vocalist Yvette Bostic-Summers (Bill's wife), and the especially tasteful pianist Victor Atkins III join in for added depth and spice. There are no writing credits on the disc, but it seems that Mayfield wrote or co-wrote eight of the ten tracks, with Summers contributing on eight and Marsalis on four. Though aligned with Wynton Marsalis, Mayfield shows a definite Dizzy Gillespie influence on "Rhumba Para Jason," starting slow and speeding up considerably in the last minute. "Victor el Rojo" is a mid-tempo heater, and an easy version of the jazz standard "After You've Gone" shows Mayfield's feet firmly planted in both cool jazz and Cuban melodicism. The group is at its hottest and most communal on "Rompe Saraguey" and "Irvin's Crisis," which features a stop-start melody reminiscent of Thelonious Monk's "Evidence." Mayfield turns a snippet of a melody into a descarga for "Bill's Q Yvette," and the "Oye Como Va"-like "El Barrio" features Bill Summers on vocals. Atkins really lays his influences on the table for all to hear with the elegant ballad "Stardust," and goes from McCoy Tyner-ish modalism to Eddie Palmieri-style montuno freneticism on "Pulphus' Final Frontier." This is a good first effort, and it seems as if Hombres Calientes are committed to being a living, working band.


                CHARLIE PARKER
                   Recording Date:
                         March 29, 1956
                         Miles Davis           TP
                         Charlie Parker       AS
                         Lucky Thompson    TS
                         Dodo Marmarosa    P
                         Arvin Garrison       G 

                         Vic McMillan           B
                         Roy Porter             D

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1. D1010-1 Moose The Mooche Dial LP 201
2. D1011-1 Yardbird Suite Dial LP 201

3. D1012-1 Ornithology Dial LP 208
4. D1013-4 A Night In Tunisia Dial LP 201

Review by Ted Goioa
The Dial Sessions mark Parker?s greatest legacy, and on his debut date for the label, the altoist is at top form. The lopsided melody reworks ?I Got Rhythm? changes, and Parker floats out of the starting-gate with a sinuous improvisation that makes it all look so easy. Miles tries to follow with some of his bebop licks, but he is still several years away from finding his mature voice. Don?t miss Marmarosa?s intro and 16-bar solo, and hear why many think this under-recorded musician could have been one of the great modern jazz piano masters. A landmark bebop performance.

Charlie Parker's alto break on his Dial recording of "A Night in Tunisia" lasts only seven seconds -- but it may be the most important jazz moment of the decade. The whole bebop revolution is crammed into this break: the off-the-cuff virtuosity, the rhythmic displacements, the defiance of pop music expectations, and, above all, the declaration of bebop as a progressive artistic movement in which such radical gestures possessed their own intrinsic validity. This is shock-and-awe jazz, and it sounds just as breathtaking today as it did back in 1946. The song continues after this extraordinary moment -- indeed, the solos have just started -- but everything now is anticlimactic. Bird has just shown how far ahead he is of everyone else in the studio, including Miles Davis (age 19), who has the unenviable job of following the alto solo. A remarkable performance even by the Everest-high standards set by Parker in his earlier work.

Charlie Parker's 1946 Hollywood stay was personally disastrous, culminating in arrest and six-month commitment to a state mental hospital. From the perspective of his music, however, the months before his meltdown stand out as an unforgettable period. "Ornithology" (based on the chords to "How High the Moon") is a bebop high point. Bird is in fine fettle, and a cup-muted Miles shows increasing self- confidence. Lucky Thompson is an overlooked and under-recorded musician who helped budge the tenor sax from its Swing Era complacency. As for guitarist Garrison, he plays a mere 22 notes on the entire 3-minute track. Not a bad deal: immortality for 22 notes.


                  ORNETTE COLEMAN
                   Ornette on Tenor

                      Recording Date: 
                           March 22, 1961 tk 4
                           March 27, 1961 tk 1-4, 5

                           Ed Blackwell          D 
                           Don Cherry           TP
                           Ornette Coleman   TS
                           Jimmy Garrison     B 

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Review by Steve Huey
It's an understatement to say that Ornette Coleman's stint with Atlantic altered the jazz world forever, and Ornette on Tenor was the last of his six LPs (not counting outtakes compilations) for the label, wrapping up one of the most controversial and free-thinking series of recordings in jazz history. Actually, it's probably his least stunning Atlantic, not quite as revolutionary or memorable as many of its predecessors, but still far ahead of its time. Coleman hadn't played much tenor since a group of Louisiana thugs beat him and destroyed his
instrument, but he hadn't lost his affection for the tenor's soulful, expressive honk and the ease with which people connected with it. That rationale might suggest a more musically accessible session, but that isn't the case. Ornette on Tenor is just as challenging and harmonically advanced as any of his previous Atlantics. In fact, it's arguably more so, since there aren't really any memorable themes to return to. That means there are fewer opportunities for Coleman and Don Cherry to interact and harmonize, which puts the focus mainly on Coleman's return to tenor playing. And, actually, it isn't tremendously different from his alto playing. There are a few traces of Coleman's early Texas gutbucket R&B days, plus a few spots where he explores a breathier tone, but for the most part his spiraling solo lines are very similar to his other Atlantic albums, and his upper-register sound is often a dead ringer for his plaintive alto cries. With Coleman ostensibly exploring new territory, it's hard not to be a little disappointed that Ornette on Tenor doesn't have the boundary-shattering impact of his previous work — but then again, it's probably asking too much to expect a revolution every time out.


                           HANK MOBLEY
                         Recording Date:
                             March 26, 1961

                             Paul Chambers    B 
                             Grant Green       G 
                             Philly Joe Jones  D 
                             Wynton Kelly       P 
                             Hank Mobley      TS

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Review by Scott Yanow
This is one of the best-known Hank Mobley recordings, and for good reason. Although none of his four originals ("Workout," "Uh Huh," "Smokin'," "Greasin' Easy") caught on, the fine saxophonist is in top form. He jams on the four tunes, plus "The Best Things in Life Are Free," with an all-star quintet of young modernists — guitarist Grant Green, pianist Wynton Kelly, bassist Paul Chambers, and drummer Philly Joe Jones — and shows that he was a much stronger player than his then-current boss Miles Davis seemed to think. This recommended CD reissue adds a version of "Three Coins in the Fountain" from the same date, originally released on Another Workout, to the original LP program.


                  DIZZY GILLESPIE
                     Cognac Blues

                     Recording Date:
                           March 25, 1952
                    Theatre Des Champs-Elysees

                          Dizzy Gillespie       TP, VO
                          Don Byas               TS
                          Art Simmons          P
                          Joe Benjamin         B
                          Bill Clark                D
                          Humberto Morales  CG

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Classic early European material by Dizzy Gillespie – recorded in Paris in the early 50s, and featuring backing by players that include Don Byas, Wade Legge, Jean-Jacques Tilche, and Bill Clark. The groove runs from straight bop to swing, with touches of Cubop in the mix, thanks to conga work by Humberto Canto Morales. There's a total of 21 tracks in all – and this is the best-ever compilation of the material we've ever seen, especially as much of it was issued on smaller eps, and always gets cast over different sets when it comes out. Titles include "Cognac Blues", "Sabla Y Blu", "Lullaby In Rhythm", "Blue Moon", "Mama's Blues", "Taking A Chance On Love", and "Moon Nocturne". 


                          JOSHUA REDMAN
                  Spirit of the Moment
                      Live at the Village Vanguard     
                       Recording Date: 
                             March 21-26, 1995

                            Brian Blade               D
                            Peter Martin             P
                           Joshua Redman         TS
                           Christopher Thomas   B 

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Review by Scott Yanow

This double CD gives one a definitive look at how the much-acclaimed tenor saxophonist Joshua Redman sounded in the mid-'90s. Joined by pianist Peter Martin, bassist Christopher Thomas, and drummer Brian Blade, Redman stretches from Gene Ammons (who is saluted on "Jig-a-Jug") to late period John Coltrane, showing off both his wide range and his lyricism. Redman is heard at his best on the four-minute cadenza that opens "St. Thomas," digging into "My One and Only Love" and playing almost outside on "Lyric." Of the 14 songs, nine are his originals and, although Redman was not at this point an innovator, he was well on his way to forming his own personal style. Recommended.


                        ZOOT SIMS
                     Body and Soul

                         Recording Date:
                              March 23, 1973

                             Jaki Byard          P 
                             Al Cohn              TS
                             George Duvivier B
                             Mel Lewis           D
                             Zoot Sims          SS, TS
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Reviewby Scott Yanow
Other than a couple of albums for tiny collector's labels, this Muse album was Al Cohn's first album as a leader since 1962. Cohn had spent much of the interim as a full-time writer for studios and was finally returning to active playing. He renewed his musical partnership with Zoot Sims on this quintet date for Muse, which also includes pianist Jaki Byard, bassist George Duvivier and drummer Mel Lewis. Cohn and Sims still had very complementary sounds and personalities, so their collaboration on Body and Soul [Muse] holds its own against their earlier dates. Zoot switches to soprano on "Jean"; Cohn is in top form on "Body and Soul." and the three-song "Brazilian Medley" works quite well. This is pleasing and frequently lyrical music.


                  SCOTT HAMILTON &
                   BUCKY PIZZARELLI
                       Red Door:
                Remember Zoot Sims

                          Recording Date:
                              March 22, 1995

                              Scott Hamilton     TS
                              Bucky Pizzarelli     G

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Review by Scott Yanow
As of 1998, when this CD was released, Scott Hamilton had recorded over 30 albums as a leader for Concord. Although all are quite worthwhile, the swing tenor's consistency and unchanged style since the 1970s have resulted in a certain sameness and predictability to his recordings. This release, however, definitely stands apart from the crowd, for it is a set of tenor/guitar duets that Hamilton performs with Bucky Pizzarelli. A tribute to Zoot Sims (one of Hamilton's early influences), this is a very successful outing. Pizzarelli's mastery of the seven-string guitar allows him to play basslines behind solos, so one never misses the other instruments. Although the duo performs a variety of standards, there are also some lesser-known pieces among the highlights including the title cut, Al Cohn's "Two Funky People," the Sims/Cohn collaboration "Morning Fun," and the obscure "In the Middle of a Kiss." Both Hamilton and Pizzarelli sound inspired in this format, stretching themselves while always swinging. Pizz had recorded a duo album with Sims back in 1973, and Zoot also cut a full set with guitarist Joe Pass a couple years later. This excellent, slightly offbeat outing is on the same level as those two and is highly recommended to fans of swinging mainstream jazz.


     The Piano Starts Here

       Recording Date: 
            March 21, 1933  tk 1-4
            Live 1949          tk 5-13

            Art Tatum   P


Review by Scott Yanow
There are many Art Tatum records available, but this is the one to pull out to amaze friends, particularly with Tatum's wondrous version of "Tiger Rag," during which he sounds like three pianists jamming together. This CD consists of Tatum's first studio session as a leader (which resulted in "Tea for Two," "St. Louis Blues," "Tiger Rag," and "Sophisticated Lady") and a remarkable solo concert performance from the spring of 1949. While "Tiger Rag" dwarfs everything else, the live set is highlighted by a very adventurous, yet seemingly effortless exploration of "Yesterdays," a ridiculously rapid "I Know That You Know," and the hard-cooking "Tatum Pole Boogie." This is an essential set of miraculous music that cannot be praised highly enough. 


      Recording Date: 
         March 18-19, 1963

         Milton Banana          D 
         Stan Getz               TS
         Astrud Gilberto        Vo
        João Gilberto           G, Vo
        Antonio Carlos Jobim G, P 
        Tommy Williams        B


Review by Steve Huey
One of the biggest-selling jazz albums of all time, not to mention bossa nova's finest moment, Getz/Gilberto trumped Jazz Samba by bringing two of bossa nova's greatest innovators — guitarist/singer João Gilberto and composer/pianist Antonio Carlos Jobim — to New York to record with Stan Getz. The results were magic. Ever since Jazz Samba, the jazz marketplace had been flooded with bossa nova albums, and the overexposure was beginning to make the music seem like a fad. Getz/Gilberto made bossa nova a permanent part of the jazz landscape not just with its unassailable beauty, but with one of the biggest smash hit singles in jazz history — "The Girl From Ipanema," a Jobim classic sung by João's wife, Astrud Gilberto, who had never performed outside of her own home prior to the recording session. Beyond that, most of the Jobim songs recorded here also became standards of the genre — "Corcovado" (which featured another vocal by Astrud), "So Danço Samba," "O Grande Amor," a new version of "Desafinado." With such uniformly brilliant material, it's no wonder the album was such a success but, even apart from that, the musicians all play with an effortless grace that's arguably the fullest expression of bossa nova's dreamy romanticism ever brought to American listeners. Getz himself has never been more lyrical, and Gilberto and Jobim pull off the harmonic and rhythmic sophistication of the songs with a warm, relaxed charm. This music has nearly universal appeal; it's one of those rare jazz records about which the purist elite and the buying public are in total agreement. Beyond essential.


              JOEY DeFRANCESCO
                     Recording Date: 
                         March 17-18, 1998

                        Joe Ascione          D 
                        Joey DeFrancesco O 
                        Frank Vignola        G

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Review by Brian Bartolini
Try to imagine the best Italian-American wedding you've every been to — the people, the food, the style, the love — then set it to some great jazz music, Joey DeFrancesco's Goodfellas. Add this killer band to your next wedding party and be prepared to have the time of your life. Plain and simple, this album is 55 minutes of unabated fun. Joey DeFrancesco (Hammond B-3 organ), Frank Vignola (guitar), and Joe Ascione (drums), three outstanding musicians who grew up in typical Italian-American families, play some of the music on which they were raised. Highlights abound on this brilliant concept piece: the kicked-up, jazzy "Volare," the groovy, tasty "Fly Me to the Moon," the energetic, rollicking "Malafemmena," and the beautiful slow dance "Young at Heart." Even Monk's "Evidence," taken at a blistering pace, is right at home in this setting. The Goodfellas wrote a couple of tunes for the occasion as well, none better than the bluesy, gutbucket title track. This band has big-time chops, and this music swings like mad.


                      HERBIE HANCOCK
                     Maiden Voyage
                       Recording Date: 
                            March 17, 1965

                           Ron Carter            B 
                           George Coleman   TS 
                           Herbie Hancock     P
                           Freddie Hubbard   TP 
                          Anthony Williams    D 

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Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Less overtly adventurous than its predecessor, Empyrean Isles, Maiden Voyage nevertheless finds Herbie Hancock at a creative peak. In fact, it's arguably his finest record of the '60s, reaching a perfect balance between accessible, lyrical jazz and chance-taking hard bop. By this point, the pianist had been with Miles Davis for two years, and it's clear that Miles' subdued yet challenging modal experiments had been fully integrated by Hancock. Not only that, but through Davis, Hancock became part of the exceptional rhythm section of bassist Ron Carter and drummer Tony Williams, who are both featured on Maiden Voyage, along with trumpeter Freddie Hubbard and tenor saxophonist George Coleman. The quintet plays a selection of five Hancock originals, many of which are simply superb showcases for the group's provocative, unpredictable solos, tonal textures, and harmonies. While the quintet takes risks, the music is lovely and accessible, thanks to Hancock's understated, melodic compositions and the tasteful group interplay. All of the elements blend together to make Maiden Voyage a shimmering, beautiful album that captures Hancock at his finest as a leader, soloist, and composer.


                     RED GARLAND
                       Soul Burnin'

                        July 15, 1960  tk 3-5
                             Red Garland  P
                             Sam Jones    B
                             Art Taylor     D

                        March 16, 1961  tk 1, 6
                             Richard Williams TP
                             Oliver Nelson      TS, AS
                             Red Garland        P
                             Peck Morrison     B
                             Charlie Persip     D

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Review by Scott Yanow
The music on this CD reissue is drawn from three separate Red Garland sessions but had not been previously put out on CD. Best are two selections ("On Green Dolphin Street" and "If You Could See Me Now") that find the pianist, bassist Peck Morrison and drummer Charlie Persip being joined by Oliver Nelson (on alto and tenor) and trumpeter Richard Williams; the horns in particular are quite inventive during their solos. Three numbers (two standards plus "Soul Burnin'") have Garland, bassist Sam Jones and drummer Arthur Taylor in more conventional but pleasing form, while the spirited closer ("A Little Bit of Basie") matches the pianist with bassist Doug Watkins and drummer Specs Wright. Fine music that will be enjoyed by straight-ahead jazz fans, although (due to the availability of so many Red Garland sessions) this CD is not essential.


                      ZOOT SIMS
               Night Session In Paris 

                       Recording Date:
                           March 15, 1956

                           Jon Eardley         TP
                           Zoot Sims            TS
                           Henri Renaud        P
                           Eddie De Haas      B
                           Charles Saudrais    D


 Charlie Went To Cherbourg 
 Crazy Rhythm 
 I've Found A New Baby 
 Charlie Was In Rouen 


                   RED RODNEY
                      The 3R's  

                    Recording Date: 
                        March 13-14, 1979

                        Richie Cole        AS
                        George Duvivier B 
                        Ricky Ford         TS 
                        Roland Hanna     Keys 
                        Turk Mauro        BS, TS 
                        Red Rodney       TP, FG
                        Grady Tate        D 

                      LINK RETIRED

Review by Scott Yanow
Three of the Muse label's top artists of the time teamed up for this album: trumpeter Red Rodney, altoist Richie Cole and tenor saxophonist Ricky Ford. Actually, Ford is only on three of the six selections, but the talented Turk Mauro (doubling on tenor and baritone) fills in well, and the rhythm section (keyboardist Roland Hanna, bassist George Duvivier and drummer Grady Tate) was fully capable of playing anything. The music is mostly post-bop, with recent originals by Cole, Jack Walrath and Rodney alternating with Kenny Dorham's "Dead End," Art Farmer's "Blueport" and the standard "For Heaven's Sake." Excellent straight-ahead performances, with all of the musicians in fine form.


               BRANFORD MARSALIS

                     Recording Date: 
                         March 13-16, 2006

                        Joey Calderazzo   P 
                        Branford Marsalis   S
                        Eric Revis             B 
                        Jeff "Tain" Watts   D

                          LINK RETIRED

Review by Matt Collar
Saxophonist Branford Marsalis' Braggtown
finds the ever-evolving tenor man in a more action-oriented state of mind than his contemplative 2004 release Eternal. Having tackled the gigantically epic task of reworking John Coltrane's most well-known opus "A Love Supreme" on Footsteps of Our Fathers in 2002, it should come as no surprise that the Coltrane sound still lingers palpably over all the music on Braggtown. But rather than imitating or aping Coltrane's style, Marsalis has ingested the legendary innovator's concepts, utilizing them in his own unique way. Working once again with his stellar rhythm section of pianist Joey Calderazzo, bassist Eric Revis, and longtime partner in "time" drummer Jeff "Tain" Watts, Marsalis has come up with a collection of original songs perfectly suited for the muscular and sensitive group interplay this ensemble excels at. To these ends, "Jack Baker" is a funky and angular call to arms with Marsalis inverting a repeated theme as the band roils around him. Quickly changing gears, Marsalis moves to his trademark soprano for the gorgeously plaintive Calderazzo ballad "Hope." The noirish, dramatic "Blakzilla" features a bawdy and moody rubato opening that soon descends to a hyperkinetic bluesy mid-section. Interestingly, recalling his superb classical album Creation, Marsalis has re-purposed Henry Purcell's stately and sad ballad "O Solitude" here as well. The other tracks on Braggtown are equally engaging and, as evidenced by the fiery, avant-garde burn out closer "Black Elk Speaks," speak to Marsalis' abundant creative energy.


                     CHARLES MINGUS
                     The Clown
                     February 13, 1957

                         1. Haitian Fight Song
                         2. Blue Cee
                         3.Reincarnation of Lovebird

                      March 12, 1957
                         4. The Clown

                         Charles Mingus       B
                         Curtis Porter         AS,TS
                         Jimmy Knepper     TB
                         Wade Legge          P
                         Dannie Richmond   D
                         Jean Shepherd      VO


Review by Steve Huey
The Clown was Charles Mingus' second masterpiece in a row, upping the already intense emotional commitment of Pithecanthropus Erectus and burning with righteous anger and frustration. With Pithecanthropus, Mingus displayed a gift for airtight, focused arrangements that nonetheless allowed his players great freedom to add to the established mood of each piece. The Clown refines and heightens that gift; instead of just writing heads that provide launch points for solos, Mingus tries to evoke something specific with every piece, and even his most impressionistic forays have a strong storytelling quality. In fact, The Clown's title cut makes that explicit with a story verbally improvised by Jean Shepherd (yes, the same Jean Shepherd responsible for A Christmas Story) from a predetermined narrative. There are obvious jazz parallels in the clown's descent into bitterness with every unresponsive, mean-spirited audience, but the track is even more interesting for the free improvisations led by trombonist Jimmy Knepper, as the group responds to Shepherd's story and paints an aural backdrop. It's evidence that Mingus' compositional palette was growing more determinedly modern, much like his increasing use of dissonance, sudden tempo changes, and multiple sections. The Clown introduced two of Mingus' finest compositions in the driving, determined "Haitian Fight Song" and the '40s-flavored "Reincarnation of a Lovebird," a peaceful but melancholy tribute to Charlie Parker; Mingus would return to both throughout his career. And, more than just composing and arranging, Mingus also begins to take more of the spotlight as a soloist; in particular, his unaccompanied sections on "Haitian Fight Song" make it one of his fieriest moments ever. Mingus may have matched the urgency of The Clown on later albums, but he never quite exceeded it.


                       JOHNNY SMITH
               Moonlight in Vermont

                     Recording Date:
                          March 11, 1952

                          Stan Getz         TS
                          Johnny Smith    G
                          Sanford Gold     P
                          Eddie Safranski  B
                          Don Lamond      D

                          R1106-3 Where Or When
                          R1107-2 Tabu
                          R1108-2 Moonlight In Vermont
                          R1109-2 Jaguar

 April 1952
    Zoot Sims         TS                       R1134-1 Jaguar
    Johnny Smith    G                        R1135-1 Ghost Of A Chance
    Sanford Gold     P                        R1136-2 Vilia
    Eddie Safranski  B                        R1137-2 My Funny Valentine
    Don Lamond      D


Review by Scott Yanow
All of guitarist Johnny Smith's most important recordings are on this definitive CD reissue. The talented guitarist (who always featured a very attractive tone and a relaxed style) had a major hit with "Moonlight in Vermont," thanks in large part to tenor saxophonist Stan Getz (who is heard on seven of the selections), and Smith was quite popular during the first half of the 1950s. This CD has all of the guitarist's 1952-1953 recordings except for three cuts (two done with organist Joe Mooney) and has a previously unreleased alternate take of "Jaguar." With such sidemen as Getz or fellow tenors Zoot Sims and Paul Quinichette and a solid rhythm section, Smith brings melodic beauty to a variety of standards, including "Where or When," "My Funny Valentine," "Tenderly," and "Cherokee." Recommended.