Roy Eldridge, Coleman Hawkins & Benny Carter: Smack
The Chocolate Dandies
The Commodore Story (Commodore CMD-2-400)
Bernard Addison (guitar).
Recorded: May 25, 1940
Rating: 90/100 (learn more)
This ad-hoc recording ensemble (which revived a name used for various small group record dates from the 1920s and '30s) reunited stars of the Fletcher Henderson Orchestra – Henderson (whose nickname provided the tune’s title) couldn’t make it to the date, so, unusually for the time, no piano is heard here. Also, the side has no opening theme statement, but simply goes directly into its one-two-three punch of solos by some of the most distinctive soloists in jazz: Benny Carter’s polished and witty alto, Roy Eldridge’s incandescent trumpet and Coleman Hawkins’s gruff and vigorous tenor.
Reviewer: Cliff Preiss