The Mitchell-Ruff Duo decided upon a different approach for this 1958 session for Roulette, adding a string session and brass, along with veteran bassist Milt Hinton, and a young drummer, Elvin Jones (prior to his joining John Coltrane). An unusual medley kicks off with Jerome Kern's "Ole Man River," but quickly switches gears into a series of favorites by George Gershwin, though the strings bog down the proceedings at times. Ruff's lyrical French horn is the centerpiece of a waltzing treatment of Cole Porter's "Miss Otis Regrets," while Mitchell's piano solo is reminiscent of Oscar Peterson. "When I Fall in Love" is burdened by the overly dramatic strings, though the piece takes on a much more intimate tone when they fade. Although this LP doesn't reach the heights of the Mitchell-Ruff Duo's typical recordings, it is worth seeking out.
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