Luis Russell & His Orchestra

1930-1934

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AllMusic Review by

It's a shame this and the earlier Classics collection split up the bandleader's prime 1930 recordings, but such is the way of a strictly chronological series. Those wanting just one disc that covers most of Russell's best work will want to pick up JSP's Savoy Shout disc, which includes 22 cuts from 1929-1930. But for collectors in need of all of the recordings Russell cut before Louis Armstrong practically swallowed up his band whole in 1934, the two Classics discs will certainly do the trick. And while this later disc pales a bit to the 1926-1930 collection, its first half does feature classic work from Russell's band and its spin-off combo, J.C. Higginbotham and His Six Hicks. Along with Higginbotham's own irrepressible trombone work, these sides also offer a wealth of solo treats from such band standouts as trumpeter Henry Allen and saxophonists Charlie Holmes and Albert Nicholas. The later 1931 and 1934 recordings might not match up to earlier classics like "Panama" and "Song of the Swanee," but they still include enough fine performances amongst the filler to keep the quality level up. A worthwhile disc, but one that's probably best suited for Russell completists.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 3:30
2 3:21
3 3:08
4 3:25
5 3:09
6 3:01
7 3:07
8 2:54
9 3:12
10
2:51
11 3:18
12 3:02
13 2:52
14
3:12
15 3:04
16 2:53
17 3:05
18 3:30
19 3:03
20 3:04
21 3:03
22 3:02
23
3:15
24 2:46
blue highlight denotes track pick