The second CD in the Classics label's "complete" Clarence Williams series traces the pianist/bandleader's recordings during a 14-month period. The first six titles feature soprano great Sidney Bechet (who has a unique sarrusophone solo on "Mandy Make up Your Mind") while the first 13 also have Louis Armstrong. The pairing of these two classic and competitive greats is at its zenith on a brilliant version of "Cake Walking Babies from Home"; Satch gets the edge. In addition there are notable contributions on these 23 performances by trombonist Charlie Irvis, tenor-saxophonist Coleman Hawkins, cornetists Joe Smith, Bubber Miley and Ed Allen, clarinetist Buster Bailey and singer Eva Taylor among others. Williams's series of hot performances really epitomized small-group 1920s jazz and every entry in this Classics series is highly recommended. Other highlights include "Coal Cart Blues," "Shake That Thing," "Dinah" (which features Hawkins on baritone), "I've Found a New Baby" and two versions of "Santa Claus Blues."
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AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow