YouTube is full of moving surprises: this is a 1982 quartet performance by Humphrey Lyttelton (tpt), Henri Chaix (p), John Treichler (b), and Gerry Ceccaroni (dr). Other concert clips feature Lyttelton, Chaix, and Acker Bilk (cl) with the Harlem Ramblers Dixieland Band from Zurich. (www.harlemramblers.ch)
Lyttelton was so multi-talented, in and out of music, that people sometimes forget that he was one of the great lyrical trumpeters of the last century: he could sing a ballad in a deeply feeling way. And Chaix, also now gone, was a wonderful soloist and superb accompanist.
James P. Johnson’s seriously pretty song is often flattened out through bands that trot trhough it at a medium-tempo. Humph and Henri take its sweet sentiments to heart — which is, after all, what this music is all about.
When Vic Dickenson used to sing “One Hour” and get to the title phrase, he would emphatically hold up two fingers, letting us know that what he wanted to accomplish would take twice the time. In his honor, why not watch this performance twice? It deserves no less.