Wonderful lost work from the west coast chamber jazz scene of the late 50s – and some great work featuring the reeds of Buddy Collette
alongside the guitar of Jim Hall! The first 11 tracks on the set are from the album Swinging Shepherds – originally issued under Collette
's name for Mercury in the mid 50s, and featuring a lineup that features Collette
, Bud Shank, Paul Horn, and Harry Klee on an assortment of flutes – plus Hall on guitar, Red Mitchell on bass, and Shelly Manne or Earl Palmer on drums. The sound is light and swinging – in the playful mode that some of the players were using with the Chico Hamilton group at the time – on titles that include "The Shrike", "Laura", "Intermezzo", "Ruby", "Invitation", and "Swinging On A Star". The last 8 tracks on the session are from an obscure Porgy & Bess album – originally issued on the Interlude label, and featuring Collette
and Hall with the organ of Gerald Wilson, the accordion of Pete Jolly, the bass of Red Mitchell, and the drums of Louis Bellson. This unusual lineup really does a great job of reworking the original Gershwin tunes – using the odd instrumentation and playful arrangements to put a bright new face on tracks that include "Bess You Is My Woman", "Where's My Bess", "Summertime", and "There's A Boat That's Leavin For New York". As a bonus, the CD also features 4 more tracks from a session that has Collette
and Hall with Chico Hamilton and trumpeter John Anderson – tracks that include "It's You", "Wagnerous", and "And So Is Love".