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Big Band

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Born: 24 January 1938 in Fort Worth, TX

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

Hemphill was best known for his work with the World Saxophone Quartet -- he was arguably the band's most distinctive writer -- but his work as an improvising saxophonist and composer encompassed a variety of other contexts over the course of his career. Hemphill worked with everything from big bands to duos; he especially excelled at composing for unusual instrumental combinations. Hemphill's primary instrument was the alto; he had a huge, somewhat harsh tone, almost as if he were playing a horn...
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