Red Holloway started playing tenor sax when he was twelve years old. He graduated from DuSable High School, where he had played in the school big band with Johnny Griffin and Eugene Wright. He also attended the Conservatory of Music in Chicago Chicago.
When Red was nineteen years old he became bandmaster for the U.S. Fifth Army Band, after completing his military service, he returned to Chicago and played with the likes of Yusef Lateef and
Dexter Gordon. In 1948 he joined blues vocalist Roosevelt Sykes and later played with other blues musicians such as Willie Dixon, Junior Parker, Lloyd Price, and John Mayall.
In the 1950s Red Holloway played in the Chicago area with Billie Holiday, Muddy Waters, Chuck Berry, Ben Webster, Jimmy Rushing, Arthur Prysock, Dakota Staton, Eddie Vinson, Wardell Gray, Sonny Rollins, Red Rodney, Lester Young, Joe Williams, Redd Foxx, B.B. King, Bobby Bland and Aretha Franklin. He also toured with Sonny Stitt, Memphis Slim and Lionel Hampton. Red became a member of the house band for Chance Records in 1952, he subsequently appeared on many recording sessions for the Chicago-based Independents Parrot, United and States, and Vee-Jay.
From 1963 to 1966, Red Holloway was in organist "Brother" Jack McDuff's band, which also featured a young guitarist, George Benson. In 1974, Holloway recorded The Latest Edition with John Mayall and toured Europe, Japan, Australia and New Zealand. From 1977 to 1982, Holloway worked with Sonny Stitt, recording two albums together, and after Stitt's death, Holloway played and recorded with Clark Terry.
Red Holloway died February 25, 2012, one month after Etta James, with whom he had worked extensively.
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