Screamin’ Jay Hawkins – A Portrait Of A Man And His Woman – LP

Mixing the theatrical, the operatic and the ghoulish, Screamin’ Jay Hawkins was a one-off whose shocking stage tactics helped him find initially fame in the mid-1950s. Recorded in Nashville in 1973 and his sole offering for local label Hot Line, ‘A Portrait Of A Man And His Woman’ is Hawkins at his most accessible; the title track’s haunting delivery and a remake of calling card ‘I’ve Put A Spell On You’ balanced by bright takes of ‘Itty Bitty Pretty One’ and Conway Twitty’s ‘It’s Only Make Believe,’ with plenty of grunts, shouts and animalistic interjections beneath Hawkins’ operatic and gospel-tinged vibrato. Hawkins fans, take note!



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