By the time of the earliest of these sessions (1949), the trombone had taken its rightful place in modern jazz due to the efforts of the men who appear here as leaders of the three groups represented.
J.J. Johnson was the first to demonstrate the possibilities of adapting the slide to bebop, at first thought playable only on alto saxophone and trumpet due to the preeminence of Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie. Here his virtuosity is revealed in the company of a young Sonny Rollins, Kenny Dorham, a pre-MJQ John Lewis, and Max Roach--a gathering of modern masters.
Kai Winding, J.J.’s partner-to-be, is also heard in a sextet format with a working group that if it wasn’t working, was jamming somewhere. Swing was as natural as breathing to Brew Moore and Gerry Mulligan, and George Wallington who played in Dizzy Gillespie’s first group on 52nd Street, was one of the first pianists in the bop style.
The Bennie Green date (1951) finds the Chicago-born trombonist in the company of the rough-and-ready tenor of Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis as part of a septet that mixes attitudes of a jumping blues band with some of the more modern elements.
with Sonny Rollins, Kenny Dorham, Brew Moore, Gerry Mulligan, John Lewis, Max Roach, Roy Haynes, Art Blakey, and others