The First Lady of jazz, Mary Lou Williams (1910 - 1981) was the evolution of jazz itself. Starting her professional career as pianist/composer/arranger in the 20s, her style was swing but in the '40s she adopted the bop and later on she even ventured into the realm of avant-garde jazz. Yet she never lost her blues feeling which is evident in this long-awaited LP.
She contributed compositions and arrangements for many famous big bands such as Andy Kirk, Benny Goodman, Earl Hines, Duke Ellington and Dizzy Gillespie. In the late '60s and the '70s she was more focused on composing sacred music. And one of her jazz masses was choreographed by Alvin Ailey. Around the time of this recording Mary Lou in her mid-60s was still active in the New York jazz scene performing regularly at the Cookery with the group recorded here. SteepleChase was proud to have the opportunity of recording one of the most significant artists of jazz of this century.