Coleman Hawkins

Coleman Hawkins

Coleman Hawkins – Biography

Coleman Hawkins was born in St. Joseph, Missouri in 1904. He started his career as part of Mamie Smith’s backing band and eventually began performing with and learning from Fletcher Henderson, Louis Armstrong and Benny Goodman. In 1934, Hawkins left the United States to tour Europe with Django Reinhardt and Benny Carter, which helped to popularize jazz music overseas.

He returned to the U.S. in 1939 and released the seminal “Body and Soul” recording. This re-established Hawkins as one of America’s leading saxophonists, while simultaneously paving the way for bebop. He recorded prolifically until his death in 1969. Keep reading below for Coleman Hawkins album reviews and accolades.


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