Random Access: Gil Bernal – Strawberry Stomp

Strawberry Stomp
written by Jerry Leiber & Mike Stoller
performed by Gil Bernal
issued in March 1954 on Spark 45×106

The band on this record is tenor saxman Gil Bernal, drummer Jesse Sailes, bassist Ralph Hamilton, guitarist Chuck Norris, and Mike Stoller on piano. Bernal is another one of my favoite “unknowns.” He started out in Lionel Hampton’s band but ended up a City Slicker with Spike Jones! When he wasn’t with either during the 1950’s he did a ton of session work! He is on almost every Spark label release, every Coasters session from 1956 and 1957, including classics like “Young Blood” and “Searchin'”. He is also on Duane Eddy’s Rebel Rouser. That is just to name a few! This is one of the two Spark sides that, to my knowledge, have not been reissued on CD. The other is “The Whip”. If I get lucky, I’ll share that scorcher with you :0)
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