Louis Nelson

Big Four, Vol. 2

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This is a better-than-expected session by four New Orleans jazz veterans. Trombonist Louis Nelson is the leader on these two albums (of which this is the second) but his role is mostly supportive with only occasional solos. The main star is clarinetist George Lewis who, even with a few minor missteps (particularly on "Sentimental Journey"), is heard throughout in top form. With pianist Joe Robichaux and banjoist Emanuel Sayles completing the unusual quartet, the music is uncluttered, sincere and swinging. The repertoire contains a few unexpected tunes (including a heated "Marie," "I Wish I Was in Peoria" and "Goodnight Ladies") and the rendition of "Wait 'Til the Sun Shines Nellie" is a highlight. Well worth searching for by New Orleans jazz fans, chiefly for Lewis' playing.

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