Barbara Carroll / Mary Lou Williams

Ladies in Jazz

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This is a reissue of an early LP that devoted a side apiece to these two talented pianists in a trio setting. Most of Barbara Carroll's recordings from this era are long out of print, and she was recorded rather sporadically until a flurry of activity in the early '90s, so it's a treat to hear her swinging renditions of gems like "Taking a Chance on Love" and "The Lady's in Love With You," with the added bonus of a previously unissued track, "They Can't Take That Away From Me." Mary Lou Williams' set is more adventurous, featuring an adaptation of Leoncavallo's "Pagliacci," and classic show tunes like "The Surrey With the Fringe on Top" and "'S Wonderful." But it's her potent originals that steal the show -- the bluesy "In the Purple Grotto" and "Opus Z," a composition co-written with the unjustly neglected Herbie Nichols.

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