August 2008

Jimmy Smith
Live at the Club Baby Grand Vols. 1-2
Blue Note Records

Jimmy Smith, who burst onto the jazz scene in 1956 and forever changed the way the organ is played, recorded prolifically for Blue Note during six-year period that followed his emergence. Live at the Club Baby Grand Vols. 1-2 had previously eluded other reissue series since it features Smith with his working trio (guitarist Thornel Schwartz and drummer Donald Bailey) but without any guest stars. No matter; the two CDs (which include four selections apiece, among them “Sweet Georgia Brown,” “The Preacher” and “Get Happy”) find Smith in often exuberant form. Now his only unavailable Blue Note album is Plays Pretty Just for You.

Originally published in August 2008
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