The Unforgettable Hampton Family (2011)

Deacon Clark Hampton, a son of slaves, lifted his twelve children out of poverty by making them into successful musicians.


Julie Cohen


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The Hampton siblings - and their kids and even grandkids - have made their mark in many different areas of the jazz world, from traditional big band swing, to more experimental jazz to cabaret singing. Between them, they've worked alongside many of the jazz greats spanning eight decades.

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Documentary | Short



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3 February 2011 (USA) See more »

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User Reviews

Unforgettable for sure.
31 December 2016 | by bluepoetproductions-78055See all my reviews

I had the pleasure of knowing Dawn Hampton; which is to say I would sit and talk with her at many Swing Dance events, before mustering up the courage to ask her to dance. And I did so a few times. I called her "Sunshine", and she told me that she liked that name. Over the years of being in and around her, you would learn bits and pieces about her history; both from fellow dancers, as well as from her own lips, as she would touch on memories during conversation. But this documentary - having been years since I had been out swing dancing - I just learned existed today, as I was reflecting on Dawn's passing in September of this year - was a joy to see Dawn doing Dawn in front of a camera, just as I remembered her in life. As well as being able to put all the pieces of the Hampton family puzzle together, to see just how she fit into the broader picture. This short documentary, that I was able to find online for public streaming, was so well put together. It flowed seamlessly from family member to family member, with Dawn and her brother Slide, as well as their two sisters, offering a core commentary to the whole piece. I highly recommend the viewing of this chapter of American history, as seen through the eyes of the Hampton family of performers.

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