This LP launched the Jazz Archives label, a company whose releases of early jazz put an emphasis on alternate takes and unusual performances. This excellent album has eight exciting performances by The Rhythmakers, most of which match together trumpeter Henry Red Allen and clarinetist Pee Wee Russell in 1932; their four versions of "Oh! Peter" are classic. In addition there are selections from Eddie Condon's groups in 1938 and 1940 (featuring trombonist Jack Teagarden, trumpeter Marty Marsala, clarinetist Russell and pianist Fats Waller), a Joe Sullivan piano solo and a version of "Honeysuckle Rose" that was the highpoint of Fats Waller's erratic 1942 Carnegie Hall concert. This album is worth searching for by prebop fans. Fortunately many of the Jazz Archives releases have been reissued on CD by a European label using the same name.
Chicago Style Review
by Scott Yanow