Original Benny Goodman Trio and Quartet Sessions, Vol. 1: After You've Gone
Benny Goodman's original trio had as much sociological importance as it did musical worth. By publicly performing with pianist Teddy Wilson, Goodman broke through racial barriers, initiating open integration within jazz ensembles. Goodman must have realized that having a superb stylist like Wilson on his team was worth any flack he got. The razzle-dazzle trio, which also included drum sensation Gene Krupa, could tear through stomping numbers such as "China Boy" and "After You've Gone" and then turn around and caress ballads -- their "Body and Soul" features a classic example of Wilson's melodic wizardry and exquisite tone. The addition of the innovative, swinging, vibraphonist Lionel Hampton on "Tiger Rag" and "Running Wild" brought out the rampaging virtuoso in each of the group members even more. By combining refinement and excitement, the Goodman trio and quartet proved that chamber jazz could be as ballsy as it was ravishing.