Creative as a player and a producer, the French pianist Henri Renaud put both areas of his talent to use during a visit to New York in the spring of 1954. He assembled into combos for a series of recording sessions a number of musicians who frequently performed at Birdland, the city’s most prominent jazz club. A sextet date brought together three of the most stimulating soloists of their generation, trombonist J.J. Johnson, tenor saxophonist Al Cohn, and vibraharpist Milt Jackson. To join him in the rhythm section, Renaud brought in Jackson’s Modern Jazz Quartet colleague Percy Heath on bass, and the highly regarded left-handed drummer Charlie Smith. In another session, Renaud stepped aside in favor of Duke Jordan, a pianist much admired for his work with Charlie Parker. The veteran Kansas City bassist Gene Ramey and drummer Lee Abrams rounded out the rhythm section.
I’ll Remember April, Jerry’s Old Man, Jay Jay’s Blues, There’s No You, Out of Nowhere, Lullaby of the Leaves, If I Had You, Indiana, Just One of Those Things, Embraceable You, Minor Escamp (aka Jordu), Scotch Blues, Confirmation
with Milt Jackson, J.J. Johnson, Kai Winding, Henri Renaud, Percy Heath, Charlie Smith, Al Cohn, Duke Jordan, Gene Ramey, Lee Abrams