Even though this two-LP French set was released over 20 years ago, some of its contents have not been reissued since. The great tenor-saxophonist is featured as a sideman with a variety of bands during 1930-34, including a few sessions he co-led with trumpeter Red Allen, dates led by trumpeter Jack Purvis, comb playing Red McKenzie and Benny Goodman and also the all-star Chocolate Dandies of 1930. In addition, one hears the Coleman Hawkins big band of 1940, along with his two guest shots with Count Basie in 1941. There are lot of strong examples of early swing on this valuable set with Hawkins usually taking solo honors.
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