12 Songs, 25 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Rockabilly icon Dale Hawkins is best known for his infectious hit “Suzie Q,” and though he would never have another hit of “Suzie Q’s” magnitude he was a top-flight guitarist and veteran Louisiana bandleader who served as a mentor to some of the finest rock and rollers of the era. Members of Hawkins band would go on to form Los Angeles' infamous Wrecking Crew, an assemblage of studio musicians who would play on some of the most important American recordings of the ‘60s. Daredevil eschews Hawkins better-known work for an illuminating look at some of his earliest studio demos. The set includes a beat heavy run through of “Suzie Q” that reveals the deep blues origins of Hawkins best known number. Meanwhile rockabilly rave-ups like “Daredevil,” and a fiery run through of Tarheel Slim’s epochal “Number Nine Train” prove that Hawkins’ band was particularly adept at refashioning low-slung, swamp-bound grooves into rock ‘n’ roll hits. The rhythms that Hawkins created here would have a lasting influence on popular music for decades to come.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Rockabilly icon Dale Hawkins is best known for his infectious hit “Suzie Q,” and though he would never have another hit of “Suzie Q’s” magnitude he was a top-flight guitarist and veteran Louisiana bandleader who served as a mentor to some of the finest rock and rollers of the era. Members of Hawkins band would go on to form Los Angeles' infamous Wrecking Crew, an assemblage of studio musicians who would play on some of the most important American recordings of the ‘60s. Daredevil eschews Hawkins better-known work for an illuminating look at some of his earliest studio demos. The set includes a beat heavy run through of “Suzie Q” that reveals the deep blues origins of Hawkins best known number. Meanwhile rockabilly rave-ups like “Daredevil,” and a fiery run through of Tarheel Slim’s epochal “Number Nine Train” prove that Hawkins’ band was particularly adept at refashioning low-slung, swamp-bound grooves into rock ‘n’ roll hits. The rhythms that Hawkins created here would have a lasting influence on popular music for decades to come.

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About Dale Hawkins

Louisiana guitarist Dale Hawkins' 1957 hit "Suzy Q," with its crackling bluesy guitar and insistent cowbell, was one of the most exciting early rockabilly singles. Recording for Chess (as one of its few white artists) between 1956 and 1961, Hawkins never quite duplicated its success, either commercially or artistically, but came close enough on a number of occasions to warrant respect as one of the better rockabilly singers. His drawling delivery, sense of humor, affinity for blues, and sharp guitar work (which was actually provided by such ace players as Roy Buchanan, Scotty Moore, and James Burton) are heard to good effect on his 1958 album and a number of non-hit singles. Hawkins went on to become a producer of some note in the 1960s, working with the Five Americans and Bruce Channel. In 1999 he released his first album of new material in 30 years, Wildcat Tamer, on Mystic Records. The impressive Back Down to Louisiana appeared in 2007 from Plumtone Records. ~ Richie Unterberger

HOMETOWN
Goldmine, LA
GENRE
Rock
BORN
August 22, 1936

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