Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Willie 'the Lion' Smith|
Willie Smith 1938 1940
Genres: Blues, Jazz
B. D. Tutt | London, UK. | 04/01/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Willie "The Lion" Smith was widely recognised as on a par with James P. Johnson and Fats Waller in the Harlem pianistic pantheon. A wonderful band pianist, his compositions contrasted romantic and rhapsodic themes with explosive stride.This disc includes the peak of Smith's recording output, the 14 solos he recorded for Commodore in 1939. His best known compositions are here, as are a few idiosyncratically performed standards. Sound quality is not perfect, as is usual with Classics CDs, but the quality of the music shines through.The remainder of the disc is taken up with four lively small band tracks, and one of the more bizarre mismatches in recorded jazz, four numbers where Smith accompanied (or rather played at the same time as) blues shouter Big Joe Turner. The clash of styles and apparent lack of sympathy between the two makes for entertaining, if not for prolonged, listening.Strongly recommended for the 1939 solos."