From 1929-30, the Bennie Moten Orchestra could hold its own with fellow big bands like Fletcher Henderson, Paul Whiteman and McKinney's Cotton Pickers, although it was the least known nationally of the four. The third of four Classics CDs completely reissuing Moten's recordings finds the young Count Basie taking over the piano slot and such stars joining the band as singer Jimmy Rushing and (by 1930) trumpeter Hot Lips Page. With cornetist Ed Lewis, Eddie Durham on trombone and guitar, clarinetist Harlan Leonard and Buster Moten (on accordion) also heard from, this was a mighty orchestra, as displayed on such numbers as "New Goofy Dust Rag," "The Jones Law Blues" and "New Vine Street Blues." The four imported Classics sets are certainly more complete than the two CDs put out domestically by Bluebird.
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AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow