Goldmine - 5 Stars - Excellent
Personnel: Louis Jordan (alto saxophone); Dorothy Smith (vocals); Sam "The Man" Taylor, Budd Johnson (tenor saxophone); Ernie Royal (trumpet); Jimmy Cleveland (trombone); Ernie Hayes (piano); Jackie Davis (organ); Mickey Baker, Irving Ashby (guitar); Wendell Marshall, Billy Hadnott (bass); Charlie Persip, Marvin Oliver (drums); Quincy Jones (arranger & conductor).
Recorded from 1956 to 1957.
Although the title might be confusing to those who insist on seeing Louis Jordan as a swing music artist--his jump blues was actually a rougher-edged offshoot of swing, most often recorded by small groups instead of big bands--it's entirely appropriate. Not only were Jordan's '40s hits an under-acknowledged influence on the birth of rock and roll, but the sessions on this album were recorded in 1956 and 1957, as rock and roll was becoming the primary pop music style. Backed by a group of musicians including consummate R&B guitarist Mickey Baker and produced by Quincy Jones, Jordan turns these 21 tracks into lean, sharp rock and roll as good as anything else being produced in the style at the time. Be warned, however, that Louis Jordan does NOT sing on these tracks; the vocals are handled by Dorothy Smith, while Jordan blows some mean, honking alto sax.