Volume two in the Classics Tiny Bradshaw chronology presents all of his King recordings made between November 30, 1949 and July 25, 1951; these velvety love songs and rockin' jump tunes were the first wave in the triumphant culmination of a career that had its roots in the Harlem jazz scene of the late '20s. Born Myron Carlton Bradshaw in Youngstown, OH on September 23, 1905, he took up singing and drumming with a collegiate band while he was a psych major at Wilberforce University; his first working gigs were with a band led by Horace Henderson. Bradshaw got to New York in 1928 and spent the next few years working with Marion Hardy's Alabamians, Duncan Mayers' Savoy Bearcats, Baron Lee's Mills Blue Rhythm Band and the great Luis Russell's orchestra. Bradshaw led his own band during the early '30s at Coney Island's Renaissance Ballroom; he cut his first recordings for the Decca label in 1934; despite steady gigs and increasing popularity his next commercial recording session didn't take place until 1944. The next phase of Bradshaw's career involved leading a band overseas during WWII and cutting a series of records for the Regis, Manor and Savoy labels during the mid- to late '40s. This is the background for the 26 tracks heard on this compilation. Some feel that Tiny Bradshaw's King recordings represent his best work; his first essays for this label would help expand the R&B trend that led to the development of rock & roll.
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AllMusic Review by arwulf arwulf