The MJQ disbanded in 1974 after 20 years as the Modern Jazz Quartet and two previous ones as the Milt Jackson Quartet. It was one of the longest-lived small bands in the history of jazz . As almost all dissolved groups of enormous popularity do, it reunited for tours, concerts, and recordings. Topsy was the occasion for one of those reunions. It was also an opportunity to pay homage to Count Basie, whose piano style John Lewis absorbed as a component of his own playing and whose band's qualities inspired the MJQ's approach from the beginning. The great Basie band of the late Thirties and early Forties and the MJQ had in common the blues and the rare ability to swing with power and weightlessness. "D and E" is a perfect expression of that commonality, but by no means the only one in this splendid album.