What it was all about for Roy Eldridge was the joy of playing. For half a century, he was the archetype of the musician who put everything he had into his work. He had plenty to put into it: range, volume, speed, taste, an ear for harmony, driving swing, and a combative spirit without equal. Each of those qualities is on abundant display here. His performance in the blues called "Mélange" is typical. Eldridge begins with a quiet little five-note announcement, then starts to build. Within a half-dozen choruses, he's at the boiling point. That was business as usual for the man called Little Jazz. For this date, Eldridge was joined by the master tenor saxophonist Budd Johnson, a longtime collaborator who shared Roy's ability to generate steam. Milt Jackson sat in for two numbers. The rhythm section, sparked by drummer Eddie Locke, made the swing unanimous.
with Budd Johnson, Norris Turney, Norman Simmons, Milt Jackson, Ted Sturgis, Eddie Locke