Earl Hines recorded this studio date during a trip to France in 1974, accompanied by bassist Jimmy Gourley and drummer Panama Francis. All of the selections had been in the pianist's repertoire for some time, though he manages to take a fresh approach to each song. "Tangerine" has a bit of a Latin flavor and a fine solo by Gourley. His playful side is apparent in a rather relaxed interpretation of "There'll Be So Changes Made," a piece many musicians play at a brisk clip. He also has a bit of fun disguising the introduction to "Makin' Whoopee" with a semi-classical solo, before switching to a rollicking mode, adding a series of hilarious quotes (including "London Bridge Is Falling Down"). Even though this enjoyable date is not the best starting point for a jazz fan who is just beginning to explore the recorded legacy of Earl Hines, those already familiar with his work will enjoy this Black & Blue CD.
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AllMusic Review by Ken Dryden