This marvelous collection gathers Lunceford's great Vocalion-Okeh and Columbia sides from 1939 and 1940 (the early war years), with meticulous track-by-track annotation and a concise historical essay by Bob Waldman. The infectious vocal performances of trombonist James "Trummy" Young ("Tain't What You Do," "Ain't She Sweet," "The Lonesome Road," "I Want the Waiter (With the Water)") are classic, as are the airtight arrangements of Sy Oliver, Eddie Durham, Will Hudson, and Billy Moore, Jr. Known for its over-the-top irreverence, versatility, and top-notch musicianship, the Lunceford band was at its peak on ageless tracks like "Le Jazz Hot," "Lunceford Special," "White Heat," "What's Your Story, Morning Glory," "Monotony in Four Flats," and a two-part "Dinah" (recorded in 1940, released in 1941, vocalist uncredited). There's a bit of residual source noise on some tracks, but it's minimal.
AllMusic Review by David R. Adler