Renowned trumpet players on their own, Byrd and Little joined their considerable forces in this musical collaboration of legends. This album, first released in 1959, features session work from other jazz greats such as "Philly" Joe Jones, Curtis Fuller, and Paul Chambers.
Personnel: Donald Byrd, Booker Little (trumpet); Curtis Fuller (trombone); Mal Waldron (piano); Paul Chambers (bass); Philly Joe Jones (drums); Armando Perazo, Willie Rodriguez (congas).
Personnel: Donald Byrd (trumpet); Pepper Adams (baritone saxophone); Don Ellis, Marcus Belgrave, Booker Little (trumpet); Curtis Fuller (trombone); Mal Waldron, Bill Evans (piano); Teddy Charles (vibraphone); Ed Shaugnessy, Philly Joe Jones (drums); Armando Peraza (congas); Bill Rodriquez, Earl Zindars (percussion).
Recording information: 1960.
There is more -- and less -- than meets the eye with this hard bop collection from 1960: less Booker Little and more performers than are listed on the CD. A little research corroborates what the ear suspects: the eight tracks come from three sessions, only one of which has trumpeters Little and Donald Byrd together (three tracks). The other sessions feature, respectively, Little and trombonist Curtis Fuller (two tracks) and Byrd and baritone saxophonist Pepper Adams (three tracks). Adams is one of a half-dozen performers not credited on the CD. To further confuse matters, both the session with Little and Byrd and the one with Little and Fuller have uncredited additional trumpeters -- Marcus Belgrave and Don Ellis, respectively. Suffice to say, sorting out who plays the trumpet solos is not easy. It seems, though, that Little solos only on one, possibly two, numbers. Originally, these tracks came out on a Warwick LP called Soul of Jazz Percussion. This explains the additional percussion parts -- some integrated more effectively than others -- on each of the tracks. Overall, the Byrd/Adams tracks are the most consistent. "November Afternoon" from the Little/Fuller set and "Chasing the Bird" and "Wee Tina" from the Little/Byrd set are also okay. Even so, factor in a couple of poorly handled fadeout endings along with some mixing and editing gaffes and there is not enough here to rate a recommendation, except, perhaps, to the ardent Booker Little completist. ~ Jim Todd