In 1954, trombonist Chris Barber became a full-time bandleader, and he has had his own group ever since. The original unit, one of the first English trad bands, is well featured on a wide-ranging show at this concert, which has been reissued along with three previously unreleased tracks on a 1995 Storyville CD. The Barber band (with trumpeter Pat Halcox, clarinetist Monty Sunshine, who is showcased on "St. Philip Street Breakdown," and Lonnie Donegan on banjo, guitar and vocals) was more primitive than it would become, often looking at the time toward George Lewis' group for inspiration. A change of pace is heard on two selections that have Donegan singing folk songs ("Over In the New Burying Ground" and "Leavin' Blues") with Barber forming a duet by switching to bass. A historic release, although there are better Chris Barber CDs currently available.
AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow