Personnel: Duke Ellington (piano); Ray Nance (vocals, trumpet); Jimmy Grissom
(vocals); Russell Procope (alto saxophone, clarinet); Rick Henderson (alto saxophone); Jimmy Hamilton (tenor saxophone, clarinet); Paul Gonsalves (tenor saxophone); Harry Carney (baritone saxophone, clarinet); Willie Cook, Clark Terry, Cat Anderson (trumpet); Britt Woodman, Quentin Jackson, Juan Tizol (trombone); Oscar Pettiford (cello); Wendell Marshall (bass); Butch Ballard (drums).
Recorded live at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium, California on March 30, 1953.
Includes liner notes by Stanley Dance.
Gene Norman often recorded jazz bands live when they appeared in Southern California, including a couple of Duke Ellington concerts. This 1953 set has its fine moments (particularly a good early version of "Diminuendo and Crescendo in Blue" and a feature on "Perdido" for guest Oscar Pettiford on cello), but three Jimmy Grissom vocals and a long medley of Ellington's hits weigh the music down a bit. ~ Scott Yanow