Reissue with the latest remastering and the original cover artwork. Comes with a description written in Japanese. Janice Lakers is a singer we only know from this one album – but she's a hip vocalist with a very compelling style – one that's very much in the best mode of some of the cooler American jazz singers of the late 70s! The song choices are great – some hipper jazz standards – and she's got a way of opening up with the lyrics that's far different than older vocal modes of the 50s – instead nearer to the territory of artists like Janet Lawson or Judy Roberts. Backing is by a hip trio with Debbie Poryes on piano – who really open up with their own sense of presence on the record, too – and titles include "Waltz For Debby", "Like A Lover", "Falling Grace", "Rainbow Lady", "In Your Own Sweet Way", and a nicely grooving take on "Moondance".
This double LP was the first jazz concert ever recorded at the Hollywood Bowl (and only the second one held at that L.A. institution). Although not an official Jazz at the Philharmonic concert, it has the same basic format and was also produced by Norman Granz. Trumpeters Roy Eldridge and Harry "Sweets" Edison, tenors Flip Phillips and Illinois Jacquet, the Oscar Peterson Trio and drummer Buddy Rich all jam on "Honeysuckle Rose" and "Jumpin' at the Woodside" and there is also a ballad medley and a drum solo by Rich. In addition the Oscar Peterson Trio plays two numbers, the remarkable pianist Art Tatum (in one of his final appearances) has four, Ella Fitzgerald sings six songs (including a scat-filled "Airmail Special") and collaborates with Louis Armstrong on two others. For the grand finale nearly everyone returns to the stage for "When the Saints Go Marching In" which Armstrong sings and largely narrates, cheerfully introducing all of the participants. This is a historic and very enjoyable release featuring more than its share of classic greats.
It's a damn shame that Leucocyte is the final studio album by the Esbjörn Svensson Trio. Svensson died in a tragic diving accident in June of 2008, shortly after this set was finished. More than any other recording issued by this excellent band, Leucocyte captures the art of music making at the moment of conception; it was recorded as live-in-the-studio improvisation over two days in an Australian studio. It was completely finished, post-production and all, with a release date before Svensson's death. The words "post-production" mean plenty when it comes to E.S.T.'s music. The trio often recorded and added sonic effects to their structured, composed pieces. It underscored their hip sophistication and accessibility. It made them a hit with both jazz fans and younger audiences who listen to Radiohead, Sigur Rós, and even heavy metal more than jazz.