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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Coleman Randolph Hawkins (November 21, 1904–May 19, 1969), nicknamed "Hawk" and sometimes "Bean", was a prominent Jazz tenor saxophonist.

He is commonly regarded as the first important and influential jazz musician to use the instrument: Joachim E. Berendt wrote, "there were some tenor players before him, but the instrument was not an acknowledged jazz horn"

While Hawkins is most strongly associated with the swing music and Big Band era, he began playing professionally in the early 1920s and was important in the development of Bebop in the 1940s. He continued to be influenced by the avant-garde jazz of the 1950s and '60s.

Life and Career

Early Life and the Swing Era

Hawkins was born in Saint Joseph, Missouri in 1904.  Some out-of-date sources say 1901, but there is no evidence to prove such an early date.  He was named Coleman after his mother Cordelia's maiden name.

He attended high school in Chicago, then in Topeka, Kansas at Topeka High School. He later stated that he studied harmony and composition for two years at Washburn College in Topeka while still attending THS. In his youth he played piano and cello, and started playing saxophone at the age of nine; by the age of fourteen he was playing around eastern Kansas.

Coleman Hawkins (incorrectly spelled "Haskins" in the caption) pictured in the Topeka High School orchestra, from the 1921 yearbook.
Coleman Hawkins (incorrectly spelled "Haskins" in the caption) pictured in the Topeka High School orchestra, from the 1921 yearbook.

Hawkins joined Mamie Smith's Jazz Hounds in 1921 with whom he toured through 1923, at which time he settled in New York City. Hawkins joined Fletcher Henderson's Orchestra, with whom he played through 1934, sometimes doubling on clarinet and bass saxophone. Hawkins' playing changed significantly during Louis Armstrong's tenure with the Henderson Orchestra.

In 1934 Hawkins accepted an invitation to play with Jack Hylton's band in London. During the mid to late 1930s Hawkins toured Europe as a soloist, memorably working with Django Reinhardt and Benny Carter in Paris in 1937, and many other groups until returning to the USA in 1939. In that same year he recorded a seminal jazz solo on the pop standard "Body and Soul", a landmark recording of the Swing Era. It is unique in that virtually the entire recording is improvised - only in the first 4 bars is the melody stated in a recognizable fashion. It is considered by many to be the next evolutionary step in jazz recording from where Louis Armstrong's "West End Blues" in 1928 left off.

The Bebop era

After an unsuccessful attempt to establish a big band he led a combo at Kelly's Stables on Manhattan's famed 52nd Street with Thelonious Monk, Oscar Pettiford, Miles Davis, and Max Roach as sidemen. He was leader on the first ever bebop recording session with Dizzy Gillespie and Max Roach in 1943. Later he toured with Howard McGhee and recorded with J. J. Johnson and Fats Navarro. He also toured with Jazz at the Philharmonic. In 1948 Hawkins recorded Picasso, an influential piece for unaccompanied saxophone.

After 1948 Hawkins divided his time between New York and Europe, making numerous freelance recordings. In the 1960s he appeared regularly at the Village Vanguard in Manhattan.

During his long career Hawkins was always inventive and seeking new challenges. He directly influenced many bebop performers, and later in his career, recorded or performed with such adventurous musicians as Sonny Rollins, who considered him his main influence, and John Coltrane. He appears on the Thelonious Monk with John Coltrane (Riverside) record. In 1960 he recorded on Max Roach's We Insist! - Freedom Now suite.

Later life

He also performed with more traditional musicians, such as Henry "Red" Allen and Roy Eldridge, with whom he appeared at the 1957 Newport Jazz Festival, and recorded Coleman Hawkins Encounters Ben Webster with fellow tenor saxophonist Ben Webster on December 16, 1957, along with Oscar Peterson (piano), Herb Ellis (guitar), Ray Brown (bass), and Alvin Stoller (drums). This Hawkins and Webster recording is a jazz classic, the coming together of two giants of the saxophone. In the 1960s, he recorded with Duke Ellington.

What was up to date in jazz changed radically over the decades. When record collectors would play his early 1920s recordings during Hawkins' later years he would sometimes deny his presence on them, since the playing on the old records sounded so dated.

In his later years, Hawkins began to drink heavily and stopped recording (his last commercial recording session was in late 1966). He died of pneumonia in 1969 and is interred at the Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx. A biography of Hawkins, The Song of the Hawk (1990), was written by British jazz historian John Chilton.

Notable works

Body and Soul
Picasso (1948)
The Hawk Flies High (1957)
Coleman Hawkins Encounters Ben Webster (1957)
The Genius of Coleman Hawkins (1957)
Hawk Eyes! (1959)
In a Mellow Tone (1960)
Alive! (1962)
Duke Ellington Meets Coleman Hawkins (1962)
Sonny Meets Hawk! (1963)


"As far as I'm concerned, I think Coleman Hawkins was the President first, right? As far as myself, I think I'm the second one." Tenorman Lester Young, who was called "Pres", 1959 interview with Jazz Review.

"When I heard Hawk I learned to play ballads." Miles Davis.

Commentary on Coleman Hawkins by Sonny Rollins and Dizzy Gillespie. *
Segment of the film "A Great Day In Harlem".

* Note:
  The above clip is taken edited from a link to www.youtube.comIf there any questions or concerns, please contact that website.

Fast List - Just The Recordings

Note 1:  On this list I have included only those recordings with Hawkins on them.  In my more extensive overview with notes, I have included some recordings by other artists of some of the same tunes Hawkins recorded.  Sometimes this is to compare Hawkins to another saxophonists and sometimes to compare other ensembles to the ones in which Hawkins was recorded.  This is to encourage you to take the extra steps and do some of your own research into this music.  I believe that jazz musicians and fans need to know the history and background of the music, much like a number of the better classical organists who know how to be organ mechanics.

Note 2:  All recording clips are links into www.redhotjazz.com and www.youtube.com.  If there are any questions or concerns, please contact those websites.

Dicty Blues 1923
Manda 1924
How Come You Do Me Like You Do 1924

Money Blues 1925
The Stampede 1926
Clarinet Marmelade 1926
St Louis Shuffle 1927
Whiteman Stomp 1927
Come On Baby 1928
Blazin 1929

Plain Dirt 1929
Wherever There’s A Will, Baby 1929
One Hour 1929
Hello Lola 1929
Chinatown My Chinatown 1930
Business in F 1931
Blue Moments 1932
New King Porter Stomp 1932
Stringin’ Along On A Shoe String 1933
Queer Notions 1933
It’s The Talk Of The Town 1933
The Day You Came Along 1933
Jamaica Shout 1933
Hocus Pocus 1934
Meditation 1935
Netcha's Dream1935
One Sweet Letter From You 1939
Body and Soul 1939
I Surrender Dear 1940
The Man I Love 1944
Riff Tune 1945
Ballade Ca. 1950
Fine and Mellow 1957
Indian Summer 1958
Sweet Lorraine Ca. 1959
Cloudy 1960
Lover Man 1961
The Rictic 1962
Bean's Self Portrait 1962
Jazz Playlist: Coleman Hawkins Live In Brussels – 1962 – Part 1
Jazz Playlist: Coleman Hawkins Live In Brussels – 1962 – Part 2
Jazz Playlist: Coleman Hawkins Live In Brussels – 1962 – Part 3
Crazy Rhythm 1965
Body and Soul 1967
Ladies' Lullaby Mid 1940's

Overview of Selected Recordings by Coleman Hawkins 
                            With Commentary

  All recording clips are links into www.redhotjazz.com and www.youtube.com.  If there are any questions or concerns, please contact those websites.

Coleman Hawkins with Fletcher Henderson & His Orch. – New York – Aug. 9, 1923 – Vocalion B 14654
"Dicty Blues"
A teenaged Hawkins is here, supplying 4-to-the bar bass notes on bass sax, and later on, a slap-tongue solo. This is early, and recorded mechanically, through a funnel-shaped horn, concentrating sound (and cutting off most of the bass frequency) onto a mica diaphragm vibrating a needle cutting a groove in a wax disc rotating at roughly 78 times a minute. A note to all you teenaged sax players at the jam session; you’re already playing a higher order music than these cats were in 1923!

Coleman Hawkins with Fletcher Henderson & His Orch. – New York, Oct. 7, 1924 – Columbia 228-D
This recording was made about a week after Louis Armstrong joined the band, and his solo comes near the end, where the arrangement had been 'opened up' for it.  The band as a whole still reflects the period before him.  It is ‘peppy’ rather than swinging, playing a tune by the veteran Eastern ragtime master and Broadway show music composer, Eubie Blake. And it has a Hawkins playing slap-tongue. Can this be the same man who recorded "Ruby, My Love" with Thelonius Monk some 35 years later? In later years, when plied by trad. jazz enthusiasts with these old recordings, Hawkins would say, "Oh no, that was my father."
To it’s credit, this recording is a pleasant dance number and for an acoustical recording, pretty crisp sounding sonically.

Coleman Hawkins with Fletcher Henderson & His Orch. – New York, Nov 17, 1924 – Banner 1445
"How Come You Do Me Like You Do"
This is mainly a feature for Louis Armstrong, but at the very end Hawkins gets a little piece of the action.  Is it my imagination or am I hearing a little emulation of Sidney Beche’ in Hawk’s tone?
coustically recorded.

Coleman Hawkins with Fletcher Henderson & His Orch. – New York – May 19, 1925 – Columbia
"Money Blues"
One of the earliest electrical recordings by the Henderson group. I think it was more advanced than the recording of "Sugar Foot Stomp" ten days later, but I digress. This has an early example of Hawkins NOT being a slap-tongue soloist.

Coleman Hawkins with Fletcher Henderson & His Orch., New York, NY – May 14, 1926 – Columbia
"The Stampede"
A lot of thoughts about this recording. In my estimation this recording marks where the Henderson band fully absorbed the lessons of Louis Armstrong as to how ‘hot’ music was to be played.
The whole band has fierce, hard groove says, "Outta our way, Mo’-Fo!!!" Hawkins solo abounds with Armstrong-isms, and Redman’s arrangement is impeccable for its time.
Again, in the redhotjazz.com website the discographical information says that this was recorded for Vocalian in 1937, but this is NOT the later recording. Also the Dixie Stompers, as far as I know, did NOT record "The Stampede" or even release it on Harmony records, yet in the website, the band and label are wrong under the same entry under the Dixie Stompers but the date of the recording, may 14, 1926 is correct. Strange. At any rate, I took the better sound source from the website the one with the erroneous discographical information under the Henderson band’s listing. Note also that the Dixie Stompers were a slightly truncated version of the Henderson band, recording acoustically under the Diva/Harmony/Velvetone dime-store subsidiaries of Columbia.

Coleman Hawkins with Fletcher Henderson & His Orch. New York, NY – Dec. 8, 1926 – Brunswick
"Clarinet Marmelade"
One thing that can describe this recording and Hawkins solo – Agitated.Hawkins still puts in an occasional slaptone but more as window trimming. He’s into his full staccato style of the late

Coleman Hawkins with Fletcher Henderson & His Orch. - New York – Apr. 27, 1927 – Victor
"St Louis Shuffle"
Classic Hendersonia. Classic 1920’s Hawkins

Coleman Hawkins with Fletcher Henderson & His. Orch.  New York, May 11, 1927 – Columbia
"Whiteman Stomp"
To give you an idea of how Hawkins had become THE STAR in Henderson’s band.  The tune has Fats Waller on piano as well. This was a Waller composition sold to Henderson for s hamburger gorge-fest on Waller’s part. The tune was titled and dedicated to Paul Whiteman, the white "King of Jazz". And yes we have a comparison recording here. Don Redman did the chart and painstakingly rehearsed Whiteman’s band with this number. But while Henderson’s has a loping, easy groove to it’s performance,
Whiteman’s recording comes across as stiff and TENSE, in my estimation. Let my know your thoughts. I’m taking what is listed as the 2nd take from August 11, 1927, recorded in New York for Victor – Phil Schaap had expressed his reservations as to the accuracy of the discographical information online in general, so let’s just say this was recorded in the same year as the Henderson version, but later in the year.

Coleman Hawkins with Fletcher Henderson & His Orch. – Dec 12, 1928 – New York
"Come On Baby"
Henderson’s band now has Benny Carter for their arranger, and the music shows evidence of sounding closer to a Swing Era sound, particularly in the brass writing after the verse portion of the song. Note the "Chase Chorus" ( Trading 1-measure segments ) between Hawkins and trumpeter Bobby Stark.

Coleman Hawkins with Fletcher Henderson & His Orch. – May 16, 1929 – New York And a comparison recording of the same tune. The Henderson version is recorded on Columbia
This is Henderson’s treatment of a Coon-Sanders Nighthawk tune.  Here we see that Hawkins has moved well beyond channeling Louis Armstrong and has quite strongly developed his own voice.
Coon-Sanders Nighthawk version 
Recorded June 28, 1928 – Chicago for Victor

Coleman Hawkins with McKinney’s Cotton Pickers
– Nov. 5, 1929 – New York, NY – RCA Victor
"Plain Dirt"
McKinney’s Cotton Pickers was an African American hot dance band based in Detroit Michigan, under the management of the legendary band leader Gene Goldkette. For this recording session, the band’s musical director (and former Fletcher Henderson staff arranger) on Redman brought skeleton crew of sidemen with him and populated the band with the cream of the NY jazz talent. Hawkins was one of them and he turns in a FIERCE solo.

Coleman Hawkins with McKinney’s Cotton Pickers
– Nov. 7, 1929. New York, NY – (RCA) Victor
"Wherever There’s A Will, Baby"
High velocity MONSTER Hawkins solo. Using triplet figures in a solo was all too common in the 1920’s a ‘Look Ma, no Hands’ parlor trick and a stale one, but not the way Hawk does them here. This is a real kick to listen to.

Coleman Hawkins with Red McKenzie and His Mound City Blue Blowers
– Nov. 14, 1929 – New York, NY – Victor
"One Hour"
Based off of the chord changes of stride piano dean James P. Johnson’s pop hit If I Could Be With You One Hour Tonight (heard here in the 1930 McKinney’s Cotton Pickers Recording), this recording never states the actual head. McKenzie gets a kazoo effect by playing comb and paper. This recording marks a departure for Hawkins in that he is beginning to develop his ‘rhapsodic’ take on improvising on ballads, which would come to full fruition years later and peak with his 1939 rendition of "Body and Soul". Other solos included Pee Wee Russell on clarinet and Glenn Miller on trombone.  A special thanks goes out to Phil Schaap for confirming Miller's presence on this recording.

Coleman Hawkins with Red McKenzie and His Mound City Blue Blowers
– Nov. 14, 1929 – New York, NY – Victor
"Hello Lola"
An uptempo romp, seeing Hawkins and Russell in fine form with manic solos.

Coleman Hawkins with the Fletcher Henderson Orch.
– October 3, 1930. New York, NY – Columbia
"Chinatown My Chinatown" – arr. John Nesbitt Trumpet Solo by Bobby Stark.
This recording marks one of Henderson’s first recorded if not the first recorded use of a rhythm section with utilizing string bass and guitar rather than tuba and banjo. It’s a flag-waver and Hawkins rises to the occasion with one of his most cutting edge solos for that era.

Coleman Hawkins with the Fletcher Henderson Orch
. – Oct. 16, 1931
"Business in F"
An Archie Bleyer tune and chart. Bleyer was a stock arranger in the 1920’s, and 1930’s. He penned some original hot dance band arrangements and this is one of them. Later in Bleyer’s career he was musical director for Radio and early TV personality Arthur Godfrey. Bleyer founded Cadence Records in the 1950’s, promoting such Rock artists as The Everly Brothers and the Chordettes. This is an early riff tune with a nice Hawkins solo featured prominently.

Coleman Hawkins with the Fletcher Henderson Orch. – March 11, 1932
"Blue Moments"
This recording was slowed down from Bb to A natural for the reissue on Columbia records. A horrific attempt at trumpet solo by Leora Henderson, Fletcher’s wife, was edited out of this reissue. Hawkins’ solo on this record is deep in my opinion. I used the chord changes from this tune, slowed it down some more and turned it into the Bossa Tune "Momentitos Azules". It’s in the folder with other lead sheets we use at the consortium that are not in the Real Books.

Coleman Hawkins with the Fletcher Hendrson Orch. – Dec. 19. 1932 – Okeh
"New King Porter Stomp"
This arrangement later found it’s way, only slightly updated by Henderson, to Benny Goodman.
Goodman’s July 1, 1935 recording became a monster hit.

Henry Allen – Coleman Hawkins & Their Orch. – New York, NY July 21, 1933 – Banner 32829
"Stringin’ Along On A Shoe String"

Coleman Hawkins with the Fletcher Henderson Orch. – Aug 18, 1933 – Vocalion 2583-A
"Queer Notions"
Very avante-garde for its day, this Hawkins composition makes extensive use of altered chords and augmented chords and scalar passages. Henderson used it as his theme for a time, no doubt in reply to Don Redman’s 1931 hit "Chant Of The Weed".

Coleman Hawkins with the Fletcher Henderson Orch. – Recorded on Columbia – New York, NY – Sept. 22, 1933
"It’s The Talk Of The Town"
It was an unheard of thing in those days to let a solo go on for TWO choruses but that’s just what Henderson and the people at Columbia did for this Hawkins feature.(I wonder if John Hammond had his hand in this at all.)  At any rate, this marks the first peak of Hawkins ballad stylings, a development which would peak with the famous 1939 recording of "Body and Soul". There were other important names in this recording. Henry "Red" Allen on trumpet, J.C.Higgenbotham on trombone, Hilton Jefferson on alto sax, Horace Henderson on piano, Bernard Addison on guitar, John Kirby on aluminum upright bass, and Walter Johnson on drums.

Coleman Hawkins and His Orchestra 1933 Parlophone R-685
"The Day You Came Along"
The first side listed in in Brian Rust's Jazz Discography, listing Hawkins as a leader.  Recorded
with other sidemen from the Fletcher Henderson Orchestra.
A sensual performance.
Henry "Red" Allen - trumpet
J.C.Higgenbotham - trombone
Hilton Jefferson - clarinet, alto sax
Horace Henderson - piano, arranger
Bernard Addison - guitar
John Kirby - bass
Walter Johnson - drums

Coleman Hawkins and His Orchestra -.New York, 1933 Parlophone R-1685
"Jamaica Shout"
Fantastic driving jazz from the same crew that brought you "The Day You Came Along".

Coleman Hawkins with the Fletcher Henderson Orch. – March 6, 1934
"Hocus Pocus" (Eddie Delange – Will Hudson tune and chart) Some other standout soloists on this piece beside Hawkins include Buster Bailey on clarinet and Henry "Red" Allen on trumpet.  Recorded for (RCA) Victor.  Note Hawkins attack and timbre becoming smoother and more flowing, as a contrast to his earlier staccato style of improvising.  Then again, the whole band is in a relaxed groove years ahead of its time.

Coleman Hawkins – 1935
Recorded in the Netherlands with The Ramblers (1929 recording), a hot dance band founded there in 1926 that has continued, uninterrupted, to the present day. They are considered a national treasure in their country. During a Dutch TV broadcast a few years ago "Jazz in the Netherlands" was presented. Coleman Hawkins visited Europe quite a lot between 1934 and 1939. He recorded with some of the best European bands and musicians. In the UK with pianist Stanley Black, in France with Michel Warlop and his Orchestra and in the Netherlands by The Ramblers (1941 recording). We listen to a tune written by Rambler's saxophonist Jack Bulterman and played and recorded by Coleman Hawkins in 1935. This tune, "Meditation", is part of the Time Life jazz masters LP's brought out in the seventies. "Meditation" was recorded in Casino Hamdorff in Laren. The second part of this clip is the solopiece of 'The Hawk' with pianist Rio de la Fluenza.

Coleman Hawkins – 1935 Decca 3881
"Netcha's Dream"  Recorded in Europe

Coleman Hawkins with Lionel Hampton Studio Group – Sept. 11, 1939
"One Sweet Letter From You"
Dizzy Gillespie: trumpet
Benny Carter: alto saxophone
Chu Berry, Ben Webster, Coleman Hawkins: tenor saxophone
Lionel Hampton: vibraphone
Clyde Hart: piano
Charlie Christian: guitar
Milt Hinton: bass
Cozy Cole: drums
Hampton is assumed to be vocalist.

Coleman Hawkins & His Orch. – Oct. 11, 1939 - New York – Bluebird 10523-A
 "Body and Soul"
THE famous recording. Billy Kyle takes the piano intro. This is from the 1939 Victor Bluebird recording played enhanced to bring out the details of the brushes used on the drum kit.  As far as Hawkins magnificent solo is concerned, this is considered by many to be the height of his career and playing, although he had some even more impressive and incredible contributions to make to the jazz literature well into the 1960's.  As a comparison, you can listen to the 1938 Chu Berry rendition recorded with his "Little Jazz Ensemble for Commodore Records.  There has been some discussion as which versions influenced Charlie Parker.  Listen not only to Chu's statement but that of Roy "Little Jazz" Eldridge on trumpet.

Coleman Hawkins with The Chocolate Dandies
, a recording studio group – 1940
"I Surrender Dear"
This was recorded for Commodore in 1940. The name "The Chocolate Dandies" was used by quite a few different groups.  In this case, it's:
Coleman Hawkins - tenor sax
Roy Eldridge - trumpet
Benny Carter - piano
Bernard Addison - guitar
John Kirby -bass
(Big) Sid Catlett - drums.
A great standard that lends itself well to jazz interpretations.  From nearly a generation later, we have a much different take on the tune by alto player, Art Pepper in 1956.  Vinnie, this one's for you to groove on.

Coleman Hawkins Swing Four – 1944 recorded on Signature Records
"The Man I Love"
The Coleman Hawkins Swing Four featuring:
Coleman Hawkins - tenor sax
Eddie Heywood - piano
Shelly Manne - drums and
Oscar Pettiford - bass.
For a current day take of this tune recorded on a vintage 1933 Selmer "Cigar Cutter", Click Here.

Coleman Hawkins (from a movie) 1945
"Riff Tune" ( Based on the chord changes of "Sweet Georgia Brown" )
Coleman Hawkins - tenor sax
Howard McGhee - trumpet
Sir Charles Thompson - piano
Denzil Best - drums
Oscar Pettiford - bass.

Coleman Hawkins and Charlie Parker in the early 1950’s
"Ballade" Self-Explanatory - Two MASTERS!

Coleman Hawkins – with Billie Holliday, vocal – 1957
"Fine and Mellow"
Reunited after many years with tenor saxophonist Lester Young, Billie's visual reaction to his moving solo remains as eloquent as anything she ever sang; a touching finale to their historic musical partnership. Introduced by Robert Herridge (producer/host of CBS' "The Sound of Jazz"), this is perhaps the single most famous "live jazz" performance in TV history. Members of the all-star band seen here
Coleman Hawkins, Ben Webster, Lester Young - tenor sax
Gerry Mulligan - baritone sax
Roy Eldridge, Adolphus "Doc" Cheatham - trumpet
Vic Dickenson - trombone
Danny Barker - guitar
Milt Hinton - bass
Mal Waldron - piano
Billie Holliday - vocal
...."We shall not see their likes again."

Coleman Hawkins – At an Art Farmer jazz party – Summer 1958
"Indian Summer"
The YouTube notes are wrong.  That is NOT Willie "The Lion" Smith on piano but THELONIOUS MONK!! 

Coleman Hawkins with Nat "King" Cole, vocal, – in the late 1950’s or early 1960’s performing
"Sweet Lorraine"
Coleman Hawkins - tenor sax 
Herb Ellis - guitar
Ray Brown - bass
Oscar Peterson - Piano 

Coleman Hawkins – Late 1950’s, early 1960’s
Coleman Hawkins - tenor sax
Thad Jones - trumpet
Nat Pierce - piano
George Duvivier- bass
Osie Johnson- drums

Coleman Hawkins
– 1961
"Lover Man" - A beautiful Ram Ramirez tune rendered by The Maestro.  For another take from about the same time, but on flute, check out a 1959 Rahsaan Roland Kirk version.  At this time, a special personal thanks goes out to Dorthaan Kirk for her forebearance in putting up with all my convoluted postings to the WBGO calendar!

Coleman Hawkins – Duke Elllington
– from the album, "Coleman Hawkins Meets Duke Ellington" 1962
"The Rictic"
"Bean's Self Portrait"
Aaron Bell – Bass
Lawrence Brown – Trombone
Harry Carney - Clarinet, Barítone
Sax Duke Ellington – Piano
Coleman Hawkins- Tenor Sax
Johnny Hodges – Alto Sax
Ray Nance - Trumpet, Violín
Sam Woodyard – Drums
Productor: Bob Thiele
"Duke Ellington came to me," Coleman Hawkins remembers and said: "You know, I want to you make a record with me, and I'm going to write a number specially for you."  It took almost 20 years and finally in 1962 in the famous Rudy van Gelder studio in New Jersey the two giants had a chance to record together. On the Impulse! LP there was this beautiful Ellington/Strayhorn composition. As there was no film of this recording, the poster of this YouTube clip added a few pictures of Coleman (nicknamed Bean). The back-up band is a small Ellington group consisting of Ray Nance cornet, Lawrence Brown trombone, Johnny Hodges alto sax, Harry Carney baritone sax and in the rhythm group you hear Duke on piano, Aaron Bell bass and Sam Woodyard drums.

Jazz Playlist: Coleman Hawkins Live In Brussels – 1962 – Part 1

Jazz Playlist: Coleman Hawkins Live In Brussels – 1962 – Part 2

Jazz Playlist: Coleman Hawkins Live In Brussels – 1962 – Part 3

Coleman Hawkins and Earl Hines on a TV Show in 1965
"Crazy Rhythm"

Coleman Hawkins in Concert – 1967
"Body and Soul"
Close to the end of his career, Hawk reprises the song that marked the height of his career.


This just came in over YouTube.  I think this is a nice early Bebop recording so I decided to add it - JJ - June 21, 2008

Ladies' Lullaby - ( Sir Charles Thompson )
Recorded in the mid 1940's - I'll have to check a discography on this one.
Asch 3552-B
Coleman Hawkins      - Tenor Sax
Howard McGhee        - Trumpet
Denzel Best               - Drums
Eddie Robinson          - Bass
Sir Charles Thompson - Piano