A great double-length CD – one that reunites the complete sessions for two Sonny Stitt albums on Verve! First up is Saxophone Supremacy – one of those masterful albums Stitt cut for the label in the 50s – all in a format that's misleadingly simple on paper, but surprisingly complex in execution! Stitt's backed by a trio that includes Lou Levy
on piano, Leroy Vinnegar on bass, and Mel Lewis on drums – but all players seem to hit a more deeply soulful groove than usual – just the right sound to match Sonny's sharper-edge groove, and near-perfect execution of his solos. Stitt's tone is right out front in the mix – beautifully recorded by Norman Granz, with as much respect to his sound as Sonny brings to his own renditions of the tunes. Titles include "Two Bad Days Blues", "Blue Smile", "I Cover The Waterfront", and "Just Friends". The second album is Sonny Stitt Swings The Most – a near perfect example of a saxophone master at his height! The record features Sonny blowing alongside the LA trio of Mel Lewis on drums, Lou Levy
on piano, and Leroy Vinnegar on bass – but hitting all the tunes with a powerful, professional approach that makes us know he'd sound this great, no matter what the setting. The tunes are wonderfully understated, but offer up a casebook example of just how great jazz soloing can be when it's handled this well – never overdone or overblown, with notes that are improvised, but fall into place magically – as if they always knew where to belong in the first place! Titles include "Jaunty", "The Lonesome Road", "The Way You Look Tonight", "Blue Sunday", and "That's The Way To Be", with a tiny bit of vocal by Stitt!