Primary Instrument: Bass, acoustic
Hassan A. Shakur (J.J. Wiggins), son of pianist Gerald Wiggins, Sr., was born April 15, 1956 in Los Angeles, California. He learned to play bass at age four (standing on a chair) and with his father as a guide, developed a high sensitivity and wide range of expression in jazz. At age twelve (12) he became the bassist for the Craig Hundley Trio, appearing on television shows such as the Today show, Johnny Carson, Jonathan Winters, Ted Mack Amateur Hour and the Della Reese show. The Trio also recorded an album for World Pacific Records. At age eighteen (18), Hassan joined the Duke Ellington Orchestra under the direction of Mercer Ellington. He continues to perform with the Orchestra.
In addition to performing with hisfather, Gerald Wiggins, Sr., he has performed with numerous other artists such as: Ella Fitzgerald, Dizzy Gillespie, Milt Jackson, Loretta Devine, Billy Eckstein, Al Grey, Sarah Vaughn, Joe Williams, Herb Ellis and many others. Hassan also performed on an USO Tour with Pearl Bailey and Louie Bellson entertaining the troops in the Persian Gulf. He was bassist for the Broadway show “Me and Bessie” with Linda Hopkins and “Black and Blue” with Ruth Brown and Linda Hopkins. He was also the bassist for the Duke Ellington shows “Sophisticated Ladies” and “Queenie Pie”. Hassan is a longtime member of the Bill Easley Quartet, which has recorded several albums. Hassan also performs regularly with Monty Alexander on tours in the United States, Europe and Japan.
Additionally his music credits also include appearances at Carnegie Hall, and on cruise ships such as S.S. Rotterdam, S.S. Norway, The Queen Elizabeth 2, and the Royal Viking cruise lines. He has performed in many of the Jazz Festivals including the Kool Jazz, Montreux, North Sea, Nice, Concord, Hollywood Bowl, Saratoga and many others.
Though adept at playing several instruments, Hassan’s remarkable skills are with his first instrument the bass violin. He displays a remarkable technique demonstrating skill, flexibility, and talent creating improvisational styles that are uniquely identifiable with him as a musician.