At the 1964 Newport Jazz Festival, producer George Wein gathered together some of the top survivors of Chicago jazz, partly to "re-create" some of their great recordings. Joe Sullivan was supposed to be the main pianist, but since he became ill, Wein filled in for him. This long-out-of-print but very enjoyable LP has several important historic moments. Cornetist Muggsy Spanier, who is featured on "Relaxin' at the Touro" and an excellent version of "Royal Garden Blues," would soon be forced to retire; these are his final recordings. Wingy Manone, who plays trumpet and sings on "Isle of Capri," was also being heard late in his career, and clarinetist Edmond Hall, who roars through "Sweet Gerogia Brown," had less than three years left to live. Also featured are trumpeter Max Kaminsky, trombonist Lou McGarity (paying tribute to the recently deceased Jack Teagarden on "Stars Fell on Alabama"), tenor saxophonist Bud Freeman, trombonist George Brunis (on "I Wish I Could Shimmy Like My Sister Kate"), clarinetist Peanuts Hucko, bassist Bob Haggart (on the inevitable "Big Noise From Winnetka") and a faltering Joe Thomas, playing trumpet on "I'm in the Mood for Love." Filling out the group were George Wettling, Buzzy Drootin or Jo Jones on drums and Slam Stewart on bass. A must for Chicago jazz collectors and long overdue to be reissued on CD.
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