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Jazz - Released January 1, 2014 | Verve Reissues

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Hi-Res Audio
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Jazz - Released January 1, 1987 | Concord Records, Inc.

Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography - The Qobuz Standard
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Jazz - Released January 1, 1963 | Impulse!

Hi-Res Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
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Jazz - Released May 21, 1996 | RCA Victor - Victor Jazz

Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
Much of the material on this two-LP set has been since reissued on CD, but, one way or the other, this music (particularly the first 16 tracks) belongs in every serious jazz collection. In 1939, Hawkins returned to the U.S. after five years in Europe, and it took him very little time to reassert his prior dominance as king of the tenors. This set starts off with the session that resulted in Hawk's classic version of "Body and Soul," teams him with Benny Carter (on trumpet) for some hot swing (including a memorable rendition of "My Blue Heaven"), and then finds Hawkins using younger musicians (including trumpeter Fats Navarro and trombonist J.J. Johnson) on some advanced bop originals highlighted by "Half Step Down Please." The remainder of this set is also good, but less historic, with Hawkins being well-showcased with three larger groups in 1956, culminating in a remake of "Body and Soul." ~ Scott Yanow
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Jazz - Released January 1, 1958 | Prestige

Distinctions The Qobuz Standard
This is a decent but not very exciting outing. Then 52, Hawkins uses a typically young rhythm section (including guitarist Kenny Burrell and pianist Ray Bryant) and plays melodically on a variety of originals and standards. This insipid version of "Greensleeves" is difficult to sit through but the rest of this CD is enjoyable if not overly inspiring. ~ Scott Yanow
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Jazz - Released January 1, 1965 | GRP

Distinctions The Qobuz Standard
Hawkins's last strong recording finds the veteran, 43 years after his recording debut with Mamie Smith's Jazz Hounds, improvising creatively on a wide variety of material on this CD, ranging from "Intermezzo" and "Here's That Rainy Day" to "Red Roses for a Blue Lady" and "Indian Summer." Best is an adventurous version of "Out of Nowhere" that shows that the tenor-saxophonist was still coming up with new ideas in 1965. ~ Scott Yanow
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Jazz - Released January 1, 2008 | Concord Records, Inc.

Distinctions The Qobuz Standard
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Jazz - Released January 1, 1961 | Prestige

Distinctions The Qobuz Standard
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Jazz - Released May 28, 2002 | RCA Bluebird

Distinctions The Qobuz Standard
In January 1956, veteran tenor saxophonist Coleman Hawkins recorded a dozen songs, eight with a string orchestra and four accompanied by a big band, all arranged by Billy Byers. Hawkins is the main soloist throughout, and he was still very much in his prime 33 years after he first joined Fletcher Henderson's orchestra; in fact, the upcoming year of 1957 would be one of his finest. However, Byers' arrangements are more functional than inspired, and some of these selections are more easy listening than they are swinging. Still, there are some strong moments (particularly on "The Bean Stalks Again" and "His Very Own Blues") and, although not classic, this is a pleasing release. ~ Scott Yanow
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Jazz - Released January 1, 1975 | Fantasy Records

Distinctions The Qobuz Standard
Hawkins's final studio session is rather sad. Due to an excess of drink and his unwillingness to eat, the great tenor-saxophonist went steadily downhill between 1965 and his death four years later. Recorded in late 1966, this quartet set finds Hawk constantly short of breath and unable to play long phrases. He is able to get away with this deficiency on the faster pieces but the ballads are rather painful to hear. Even at this late stage Hawkins still had his majestic tone but this recording is only of historical interest. ~ Scott Yanow
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Jazz - Released October 4, 1989 | Blue Note Records

Distinctions The Qobuz Standard
Hawkins led one of his finest bands in 1945, a sextet with the fiery trumpeter Howard McGhee that fell somewhere between small-group swing and bebop. This CD contains all of that group's 12 recordings, including memorable versions of "Rifftide" and "Stuffy"; trombonist Vic Dickenson guests on four tracks. This CD concludes with one of Hawkins' rarest sessions, an Aladdin date from 1947 that finds the veteran tenor leading a septet that includes 20-year-old trumpeter Miles Davis. ~ Scott Yanow
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Jazz - Released January 1, 1988 | Verve Reissues

Distinctions The Qobuz Standard
Coleman & Confreres. Ben Webster (ts), Roy Eldridge (tpt), and Hawkins head things up. This is one of the few worthwhile releases in this special Alpha series. ~ Ron Wynn
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Jazz - Released January 1, 2007 | Verve

Distinctions The Qobuz Standard
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Jazz - Released January 1, 1989 | Fantasy Records

Distinctions The Qobuz Standard
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Jazz - Released February 4, 2014 | Prestige

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Jazz - Released November 1, 1959 | Verve Reissues

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Jazz - Released March 2, 2018 | Legacy Recordings

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Jazz - Released January 1, 1994 | Verve

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Jazz - Released May 23, 2018 | Doxy Records

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Jazz - Released October 28, 1997 | Verve Reissues

Genius may not be the right word, but "brilliance" certainly fits. At the age of 51 in 1957, Hawkins had already been on records for 35 years and had been one of the leading tenors for nearly that long. This date matches him with the Oscar Peterson Trio (plus drummer Alvin Stoller) for a fine run-through on standards. Hawk plays quite well, although the excitement level does not reach the heights of his sessions with trumpeter Roy Eldridge. ~ Scott Yanow