Lester Young's significance in jazz is not hard to gauge. His playing influenced almost every saxophonist that came after him. On this release, we hear Young teamed up with two other jazz legends, drummer Buddy Rich and Nat "King" Cole on piano. Following 10 tracks by this unique trio, we are treated to four additional tunes as performed by a sextet led by Young.
The trio portion of this album is especially lush and intriguing, featuring wonderful renditions of Young's original, "Back to the Land," Gershwin's "The Man I Love," and a duet version of the gorgeous ballad, "Peg O' My Heart" (Rich had gone out to get something to eat). Cole's intimate piano style wonderfully complements Young's light, airy tone and unorthodox phrasing, and Rich, known for a flashy approach, plays quite sensitively here, using brushes on most tunes. Highlights on LESTER YOUNG TRIO include "I Want To Be Happy" and "I've Found a New Baby," the latter of which features the sextet in swinging form.