The recording debut of pianist Judy Carmichael was a major if somewhat unheralded event. the first important stride pianist to emerge in nearly 30 years, Carmichael has proved to be a consistently creative and exciting performer (rather than imitative) within the genre of classic jazz and swing during the years since her debut. For this set (originally out on Progressive and not yet reissued on CD), Carmichael is joined by altoist Marshall Royal, guitarist Freddie Green, bassist Red Callender and drummer Harold Jones which gives some of the music a Count Basie feel. However Carmichael's own musical personality was already nearly fully formed by the date. Highlights of the joyous music include "Christopher Columbus," "Honeysuckle Rose," "A Handful of Keys" and "I Would Do Anything for You."
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AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow