Lonnie Johnson with Duke Ellington: Move Over
Playing With The Strings (JSP CD502)
Lonnie Johnson (guitar), Duke Ellington (piano, composer), Barney Bigard (clarinet, tenor sax), Bubber Miley (trumpet), Joe "Tricky Sam" Nanton (trombone), Johnny Hodges (soprano & alto saxes), Harry Carney (clarinet, alto & baritone saxes),
Arthur Whetsol (trumpet), Wellman Braud (bass), Fred Guy (banjo), Sonny Greer (drums).
Composed by Duke Ellington.
Recorded: New York, October 1, 1928
Rating: 92/100 (learn more)
This track was the second recording on which Lonnie Johnson joined Duke's band, adding a virtuoso guitar part. The band starts things off with that classic Ellington ensemble sound, setting the scene for Bubber Miley's solo on muted trumpet, playing the theme and variations with spirit and style. He adds some growl accents to excellent effect. A saxophone trio—Johnny Hodges on soprano, Harry Carney on alto and Barney Bigard on tenor—follows with a very interesting, unusual, lilting tonal effect. "Tricky Sam" Nanton adds a fine trombone line, after which Lonnie Johnson takes a characteristically creative, skipping, rhythmic guitar solo. Bigard then jumps in and produces a fascinating tonal and textural effect in a quite unique and hauntingly beautiful clarinet/guitar duet with Johnson. The tune finishes with Miley resuming the lead, playing a marvelous line on open trumpet, and the sax trio ends it with a lilting, mellow fade. While two of the other tracks Lonnie Johnson recorded with Ellington in 1928, "The Mooche" and "Hot and Bothered," have gotten more attention, this tune with its unique elements is also outstanding.
Reviewer: Dean Alger