Johnny "Hammond" Smith was the most subtle of the organists to emerge in the 1950s, as he displays on the two sessions combined on this compact disc. He also possessed the most lyrical gift as a composer, which tracks as diverse as "Bennie’s Diggin’," "Just Say So Long," and "Dementia" bear out; as well as the flexibility to work in a variety of ensemble contexts. Here he hosts separate encounters with two musicians he had proven his mettle with on Oliver Nelson’s Taking Care of Business (OJC-1784). Nelson himself is a featured guest on three tracks where Smith works with bass (the great George Tucker) but no guitar, plus Ray Barretto’s congas; while vibraphonist Lem Winchester creates a most winning and unusual blend with the organist on the second session.
with Oliver Nelson, George Tucker, Arthur Taylor, Ray Barretto, Lem Winchester, Eddie McFadden, Wendell Marshall, Bill Erskine