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Holiday for Swing, Vol.2

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Album Review

This follow-up to Epm Musique's fine collection of Hawkins' 1938-1940 material boasts another round of the bandleader's infectious boogie swing. After hitting their stride on the earlier sides, Hawkins and the band really locked in with these cuts from 1940-1948. Along with the hits "Tuxedo Junction," "Tippin' In," and "After Hours," the collection features other instrumental highlights like "Bear Mash Blues," "Blackout," and "Shipyard Ramble." Plenty of fine solo work is heard, too, especially by trumpeter Dud Bascomb, tenor saxophonist Julian Dash, and alto saxophonist Bobby Johnson. Credit should also go to trumpeter Sammy Lowe and pianist Avery Parrish for their top-notch charts. In contrast to Classics' equally impressive, multi-disc Hawkins line, the two Epm titles offer a tidy overview of the bandleader's prime, tailor-made for newcomers.


Born: 26 July 1914 in Birmingham, AL

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s

A talented high-note trumpeter and a popular bandleader, Erskine Hawkins was nicknamed "the 20th Century Gabriel." He learned drums and trombone before switching to trumpet when he was 13. While attending the Alabama State Teachers College, he became the leader of the college band, the 'Bama State Collegians. They went to New York in 1934, became the Erskine Hawkins Orchestra, started making records in 1936, and by 1938 were quite successful. With Hawkins and Dud Bascomb sharing the trumpet solos,...
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