John Coltrane

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"Coltrane" redirects here. John Coltrane_sentence_0

For other uses, see Coltrane (disambiguation). John Coltrane_sentence_1

John Coltrane_table_infobox_0

John ColtraneJohn Coltrane_header_cell_0_0_0
Background informationJohn Coltrane_header_cell_0_1_0
Birth nameJohn Coltrane_header_cell_0_2_0 John William ColtraneJohn Coltrane_cell_0_2_1
BornJohn Coltrane_header_cell_0_3_0 (1926-09-23)September 23, 1926

Hamlet, North Carolina, U.S.John Coltrane_cell_0_3_1

DiedJohn Coltrane_header_cell_0_4_0 July 17, 1967(1967-07-17) (aged 40)

Huntington, New York, U.S.John Coltrane_cell_0_4_1

GenresJohn Coltrane_header_cell_0_5_0 John Coltrane_cell_0_5_1
Occupation(s)John Coltrane_header_cell_0_6_0 John Coltrane_cell_0_6_1
InstrumentsJohn Coltrane_header_cell_0_7_0 John Coltrane_cell_0_7_1
Years activeJohn Coltrane_header_cell_0_8_0 1945–1967John Coltrane_cell_0_8_1
LabelsJohn Coltrane_header_cell_0_9_0 John Coltrane_cell_0_9_1
Associated actsJohn Coltrane_header_cell_0_10_0 John Coltrane_cell_0_10_1
WebsiteJohn Coltrane_header_cell_0_11_0 John Coltrane_cell_0_11_1

John William Coltrane (September 23, 1926 – July 17, 1967) was an American jazz saxophonist and composer. John Coltrane_sentence_2

Working in the bebop and hard bop idioms early in his career, Coltrane helped pioneer the use of modes and was at the forefront of free jazz. John Coltrane_sentence_3

He led at least fifty recording sessions and appeared on many albums by other musicians, including trumpeter Miles Davis and pianist Thelonious Monk. John Coltrane_sentence_4

Over the course of his career, Coltrane's music took on an increasingly spiritual dimension. John Coltrane_sentence_5

He remains one of the most influential saxophonists in music history. John Coltrane_sentence_6

He received numerous posthumous awards, including canonization by the African Orthodox Church and a Pulitzer Prize in 2007. John Coltrane_sentence_7

His second wife was pianist and harpist Alice Coltrane. John Coltrane_sentence_8

The couple had three children: John Jr. (1964–1982), a bassist; Ravi (born 1965), a saxophonist; and Oran (born 1967), also a saxophonist. John Coltrane_sentence_9

Biography John Coltrane_section_0

1926–1954: Early life and career John Coltrane_section_1

Coltrane was born in his parents' apartment at 200 Hamlet Avenue in Hamlet, North Carolina, on September 23, 1926. John Coltrane_sentence_10

His father was John R. Coltrane and his mother was Alice Blair. John Coltrane_sentence_11

He grew up in High Point, North Carolina and attended William Penn High School. John Coltrane_sentence_12

Beginning in December 1938, his father, aunt, and grandparents died within a few months of each other, leaving him to be raised by his mother and a close cousin. John Coltrane_sentence_13

In June 1943, he moved to Philadelphia. John Coltrane_sentence_14

In September, his mother bought him his first saxophone, an alto. John Coltrane_sentence_15

He played clarinet and alto horn in a community band before beginning alto saxophone in high school. John Coltrane_sentence_16

From early to mid-1945 he had his first professional work: a "cocktail lounge trio" with piano and guitar. John Coltrane_sentence_17

To avoid being drafted by the Army, Coltrane enlisted in the Navy on August 6, 1945, the day the first U.S. atomic bomb was dropped on Japan. John Coltrane_sentence_18

He was trained as an apprentice seaman at Sampson Naval Training Station in upstate New York before he was shipped to Pearl Harbor, where he was stationed at Manana Barracks, the largest posting of African-American servicemen in the world. John Coltrane_sentence_19

By the time he got to Hawaii in late 1945, the Navy was downsizing. John Coltrane_sentence_20

Coltrane's musical talent was recognized, and he became one of the few Navy men to serve as a musician without having been granted musician's rating when he joined the Melody Masters, the base swing band. John Coltrane_sentence_21

As the Melody Masters was an all-white band, however, Coltrane was treated merely as a guest performer to avoid alerting superior officers of his participation in the band. John Coltrane_sentence_22

He continued to perform other duties when not playing with the band, including kitchen and security details. John Coltrane_sentence_23

By the end of his service, he had assumed a leadership role in the band. John Coltrane_sentence_24

His first recordings, an informal session in Hawaii with Navy musicians, occurred on July 13, 1946. John Coltrane_sentence_25

He played alto saxophone on a selection of jazz standards and bebop tunes. John Coltrane_sentence_26

After being discharged from the Navy as a seaman first class in August 1946, Coltrane returned to Philadelphia, where he "plunged into the heady excitement of the new music and the blossoming bebop scene." John Coltrane_sentence_27

After touring with King Kolax, he joined a band led by Jimmy Heath, who was introduced to Coltrane's playing by his former Navy buddy, trumpeter William Massey, who had played with Coltrane in the Melody Masters. John Coltrane_sentence_28

He studied jazz theory with guitarist and composer Dennis Sandole and continued under Sandole's tutelage through the early 1950s. John Coltrane_sentence_29

Although he started on alto saxophone, he began playing tenor saxophone in 1947 with Eddie Vinson. John Coltrane_sentence_30

Coltrane called this a time when "a wider area of listening opened up for me. John Coltrane_sentence_31

There were many things that people like Hawk [Coleman Hawkins, and Ben [Webster and Tab Smith were doing in the '40s that I didn't understand, but that I felt emotionally." John Coltrane_sentence_32

A significant influence, according to tenor saxophonist Odean Pope, was the Philadelphia pianist, composer, and theorist Hasaan Ibn Ali. John Coltrane_sentence_33

"Hasaan was the clue to...the system that Trane uses. John Coltrane_sentence_34

Hasaan was the great influence on Trane's melodic concept." John Coltrane_sentence_35

Coltrane became fanatical about practicing and developing his craft, practicing "25 hours a day" according to Jimmy Heath. John Coltrane_sentence_36

Heath recalls an incident in a hotel in San Francisco when after a complaint was issued, Coltrane took the horn out of his mouth and practiced fingering for a full hour. John Coltrane_sentence_37

Such was his dedication it was common for him to fall asleep with the horn still in his mouth or practice a single note for hours on end. John Coltrane_sentence_38

An important moment in the progression of Coltrane's musical development occurred on June 5, 1945, when he saw Charlie Parker perform for the first time. John Coltrane_sentence_39

In a DownBeat magazine article in 1960 he recalled, "the first time I heard Bird play, it hit me right between the eyes." John Coltrane_sentence_40

Parker became an idol, and they played together occasionally in the late 1940s. John Coltrane_sentence_41

He was a member of groups led by Dizzy Gillespie, Earl Bostic, and Johnny Hodges in the early to mid-1950s. John Coltrane_sentence_42

1955–1957: Miles and Monk period John Coltrane_section_2

In 1955, Coltrane was freelancing in Philadelphia while studying with guitarist Dennis Sandole when he received a call from trumpeter Miles Davis. John Coltrane_sentence_43

Davis had been successful in the 40s, but his reputation and work had been damaged in part by heroin addiction; he was again active and about to form a quintet. John Coltrane_sentence_44

Coltrane was with this edition of the Davis band (known as the "First Great Quintet"—along with Red Garland on piano, Paul Chambers on bass, and Philly Joe Jones on drums) from October 1955 to April 1957 (with a few absences). John Coltrane_sentence_45

During this period Davis released several influential recordings that revealed the first signs of Coltrane's growing ability. John Coltrane_sentence_46

This quintet, represented by two marathon recording sessions for Prestige in 1956, resulted in the albums Cookin', Relaxin', Workin', and Steamin'. John Coltrane_sentence_47

The "First Great Quintet" disbanded due in part to Coltrane's heroin addiction. John Coltrane_sentence_48

During the later part of 1957 Coltrane worked with Thelonious Monk at New York's Five Spot Café, and played in Monk's quartet (July–December 1957), but, owing to contractual conflicts, took part in only one official studio recording session with this group. John Coltrane_sentence_49

Coltrane recorded many albums for Prestige under his own name at this time, but Monk refused to record for his old label. John Coltrane_sentence_50

A private recording made by Juanita Naima Coltrane of a 1958 reunion of the group was issued by Blue Note Records as Live at the Five Spot—Discovery! John Coltrane_sentence_51

in 1993. John Coltrane_sentence_52

A high quality tape of a concert given by this quartet in November 1957 was also found later, and was released by Blue Note in 2005. John Coltrane_sentence_53

Recorded by Voice of America, the performances confirm the group's reputation, and the resulting album, Thelonious Monk Quartet with John Coltrane at Carnegie Hall, is widely acclaimed. John Coltrane_sentence_54

Blue Train, Coltrane's sole date as leader for Blue Note, featuring trumpeter Lee Morgan, bassist Paul Chambers, and trombonist Curtis Fuller, is often considered his best album from this period. John Coltrane_sentence_55

Four of its five tracks are original Coltrane compositions, and the title track, "Moment's Notice", and "Lazy Bird", have become standards. John Coltrane_sentence_56

Both tunes employed the first examples of his chord substitution cycles known as Coltrane changes. John Coltrane_sentence_57

1958: Davis and Coltrane John Coltrane_section_3

Coltrane rejoined Davis in January 1958. John Coltrane_sentence_58

In October of that year, jazz critic Ira Gitler coined the term "sheets of sound" to describe the style Coltrane developed with Monk and was perfecting in Davis's group, now a sextet. John Coltrane_sentence_59

His playing was compressed, with rapid runs cascading in hundreds of notes per minute. John Coltrane_sentence_60

Coltrane recalled: "I found that there were a certain number of chord progressions to play in a given time, and sometimes what I played didn't work out in eighth notes, sixteenth notes, or triplets. John Coltrane_sentence_61

I had to put the notes in uneven groups like fives and sevens in order to get them all in." John Coltrane_sentence_62

Coltrane stayed with Davis until April 1960, working with alto saxophonist Cannonball Adderley; pianists Red Garland, Bill Evans, and Wynton Kelly; bassist Paul Chambers; and drummers Philly Joe Jones and Jimmy Cobb. John Coltrane_sentence_63

During this time he participated in the Davis sessions Milestones and Kind of Blue, and the concert recordings Miles & Monk at Newport (1963) and Jazz at the Plaza (1958). John Coltrane_sentence_64

1959–1961: Period with Atlantic Records John Coltrane_section_4

At the end of this period Coltrane recorded Giant Steps (1959), his first album as leader for Atlantic which contained only his compositions. John Coltrane_sentence_65

The album's title track is generally considered to have one of the most difficult chord progressions of any widely played jazz composition. John Coltrane_sentence_66

Its altered chord progression cycles came to be known as Coltrane changes. John Coltrane_sentence_67

His development of these cycles led to further experimentation with improvised melody and harmony that he continued throughout his career. John Coltrane_sentence_68

Coltrane formed his first quartet for live performances in 1960 for an appearance at the Jazz Gallery in New York City. John Coltrane_sentence_69

After moving through different personnel, including Steve Kuhn, Pete La Roca, and Billy Higgins, he kept pianist McCoy Tyner, bassist Steve Davis, and drummer Elvin Jones. John Coltrane_sentence_70

Tyner, a native of Philadelphia, had been a friend of Coltrane for some years, and the two men had an understanding that Tyner would join the band when he felt ready. John Coltrane_sentence_71

My Favorite Things (1961) was the first album recorded by this band. John Coltrane_sentence_72

It was Coltrane's first album on soprano saxophone, which he began practicing while with Miles Davis. John Coltrane_sentence_73

It was considered an unconventional move because the instrument was not as popular in jazz as other types of saxophone. John Coltrane_sentence_74

1961–1962: First years with Impulse Records John Coltrane_section_5

In May 1961, Coltrane's contract with Atlantic was bought by Impulse!. John Coltrane_sentence_75

The move to Impulse! John Coltrane_sentence_76

meant that Coltrane resumed his recording relationship with engineer Rudy Van Gelder, who had recorded his and Davis's sessions for Prestige. John Coltrane_sentence_77

He recorded most of his albums for Impulse! John Coltrane_sentence_78

at Van Gelder's studio in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey. John Coltrane_sentence_79

By early 1961, bassist Davis had been replaced by Reggie Workman, while Eric Dolphy joined the group as a second horn. John Coltrane_sentence_80

The quintet had a celebrated and extensively recorded residency at the Village Vanguard, which demonstrated Coltrane's new direction. John Coltrane_sentence_81

It included the most experimental music he had played, influenced by Indian ragas, modal jazz, and free jazz. John Coltrane_sentence_82

John Gilmore, a longtime saxophonist with musician Sun Ra, was particularly influential; after hearing a Gilmore performance, Coltrane is reported to have said, "He's got it! John Coltrane_sentence_83

Gilmore's got the concept!" John Coltrane_sentence_84

The most celebrated of the Vanguard tunes, the 15-minute blues "Chasin' the 'Trane", was strongly inspired by Gilmore's music. John Coltrane_sentence_85

Starting in 1961, Coltrane also began pairing Workman with a second bassist, usually Art Davis or Donald Garrett. John Coltrane_sentence_86

Garrett recalled playing a tape for Coltrane where "...I was playing with another bass player. John Coltrane_sentence_87

We were doing some things rhythmically, and Coltrane became excited about the sound. John Coltrane_sentence_88

We got the same kind of sound you get from the East Indian water drum. John Coltrane_sentence_89

One bass remains in the lower register and is the stabilizing, pulsating thing, while the other bass is free to improvise, like the right hand would be on the drum. John Coltrane_sentence_90

So Coltrane liked the idea." John Coltrane_sentence_91

Coltrane also recalled: "I thought another bass would add that certain rhythmic sound. John Coltrane_sentence_92

We were playing a lot of stuff with a sort of suspended rhythm, with one bass playing a series of notes around one point, and it seemed that another bass could fill in the spaces..." According to Eric Dolphy, one night "Wilbur Ware came in and up on the stand so they had three basses going. John Coltrane_sentence_93

John and I got off the stand and listened..." Coltrane employed two basses on the 1961 albums Olé Coltrane and Africa/Brass, and later on The John Coltrane Quartet Plays and Ascension. John Coltrane_sentence_94

During this period, critics were divided in their estimation of Coltrane, who had radically altered his style. John Coltrane_sentence_95

Audiences, too, were perplexed; in France he was booed during his final tour with Davis. John Coltrane_sentence_96

In 1961, Down Beat magazine called Coltrane and Dolphy players of "anti-jazz" in an article that bewildered and upset the musicians. John Coltrane_sentence_97

Coltrane admitted some of his early solos were based mostly on technical ideas. John Coltrane_sentence_98

Furthermore, Dolphy's angular, voice-like playing earned him a reputation as a figurehead of the "New Thing", also known as free jazz, a movement led by Ornette Coleman which was denigrated by some jazz musicians (including Davis) and critics. John Coltrane_sentence_99

But as Coltrane's style developed, he was determined to make every performance "a whole expression of one's being". John Coltrane_sentence_100

1962–1965: Classic Quartet period John Coltrane_section_6

In 1962, Dolphy departed and Jimmy Garrison replaced Workman as bassist. John Coltrane_sentence_101

From then on, the "Classic Quartet", as it came to be known, with Tyner, Garrison, and Jones, produced searching, spiritually driven work. John Coltrane_sentence_102

Coltrane was moving toward a more harmonically static style that allowed him to expand his improvisations rhythmically, melodically, and motivically. John Coltrane_sentence_103

Harmonically complex music was still present, but on stage Coltrane heavily favored continually reworking his "standards": "Impressions", "My Favorite Things", and "I Want to Talk About You". John Coltrane_sentence_104

The criticism of the quintet with Dolphy may have affected Coltrane. John Coltrane_sentence_105

In contrast to the radicalism of his 1961 recordings at the Village Vanguard, his studio albums in the following two years (with the exception of Coltrane, 1962, which featured a blistering version of Harold Arlen's "Out of This World") were much more conservative. John Coltrane_sentence_106

He recorded an album of ballads and participated in album collaborations with Duke Ellington and singer Johnny Hartman, a baritone who specialized in ballads. John Coltrane_sentence_107

The album Ballads (recorded 1961–62) is emblematic of Coltrane's versatility, as the quartet shed new light on old-fashioned standards such as "It's Easy to Remember". John Coltrane_sentence_108

Despite a more polished approach in the studio, in concert the quartet continued to balance "standards" and its own more exploratory and challenging music, as can be heard on the Impressions (recorded 1961–63), Live at Birdland and Newport '63 (both recorded 1963). John Coltrane_sentence_109

Impressions consists of two extended jams including the title track along with "Dear Old Stockholm", "After the Rain" and a blues. John Coltrane_sentence_110

Coltrane later said he enjoyed having a "balanced catalogue." John Coltrane_sentence_111

On March 6, 1963, the group entered Van Gelder Studio in New Jersey and recorded a session that was lost for decades after its master tape was destroyed by Impulse Records to cut down on storage space. John Coltrane_sentence_112

On June 29, 2018, Impulse! John Coltrane_sentence_113

released Both Directions at Once: The Lost Album, made up of seven tracks made from a spare copy Coltrane had given to his wife. John Coltrane_sentence_114

On March 7, 1963, they were joined in the studio by Hartman for the recording of six tracks for the John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman album, released that July. John Coltrane_sentence_115

Impulse! John Coltrane_sentence_116

followed the successful "lost album" release with 2019's Blue World, made up of a 1964 soundtrack to the film The Cat in the Bag, recorded in June 1964. John Coltrane_sentence_117

The Classic Quartet produced their best-selling album, A Love Supreme, in December 1964. John Coltrane_sentence_118

A culmination of much of Coltrane's work up to this point, this four-part suite is an ode to his faith in and love for God. John Coltrane_sentence_119

These spiritual concerns characterized much of Coltrane's composing and playing from this point onwards—as can be seen from album titles such as Ascension, Om and Meditations. John Coltrane_sentence_120

The fourth movement of A Love Supreme, "Psalm", is, in fact, a musical setting for an original poem to God written by Coltrane, and printed in the album's liner notes. John Coltrane_sentence_121

Coltrane plays almost exactly one note for each syllable of the poem, and bases his phrasing on the words. John Coltrane_sentence_122

The album was composed at Coltrane's home in Dix Hills on Long Island. John Coltrane_sentence_123

The quartet played A Love Supreme live only once—in July 1965 at a concert in Antibes, France. John Coltrane_sentence_124

A recording of this concert was released by Impulse! John Coltrane_sentence_125

in 2002 on the remastered Deluxe Edition of A Love Supreme, and again in 2015 on the "Super Deluxe Edition" of The Complete Masters. John Coltrane_sentence_126

1965: Avant-garde jazz and the second quartet John Coltrane_section_7

In his late period, Coltrane showed an interest in the avant-garde jazz of Ornette Coleman, Albert Ayler, and Sun Ra. John Coltrane_sentence_127

He was especially influenced by the dissonance of Ayler's trio with bassist Gary Peacock, who had worked with Paul Bley, and drummer Sunny Murray, whose playing was honed with Cecil Taylor as leader. John Coltrane_sentence_128

Coltrane championed many young free jazz musicians such as Archie Shepp, and under his influence Impulse! John Coltrane_sentence_129

became a leading free jazz label. John Coltrane_sentence_130

After A Love Supreme was recorded, Ayler's style became more prominent in Coltrane's music. John Coltrane_sentence_131

A series of recordings with the Classic Quartet in the first half of 1965 show Coltrane's playing becoming abstract, with greater incorporation of devices like multiphonics, use of overtones, and playing in the altissimo register, as well as a mutated return of Coltrane's sheets of sound. John Coltrane_sentence_132

In the studio, he all but abandoned soprano saxophone to concentrate on tenor. John Coltrane_sentence_133

The quartet responded by playing with increasing freedom. John Coltrane_sentence_134

The group's evolution can be traced through the albums The John Coltrane Quartet Plays, Living Space, Transition, New Thing at Newport, Sun Ship, and First Meditations. John Coltrane_sentence_135

In June 1965, he went into Van Gelder's studio with ten other musicians (including Shepp, Pharoah Sanders, Freddie Hubbard, Marion Brown, and John Tchicai) to record Ascension, a 38-minute piece that included solos by young avant-garde musicians. John Coltrane_sentence_136

The album was controversial primarily for the collective improvisation sections that separated the solos. John Coltrane_sentence_137

After recording with the quartet over the next few months, Coltrane invited Sanders to join the band in September 1965. John Coltrane_sentence_138

While Coltrane frequently used overblowing as an emotional exclamation-point, Sanders "was involved in the search for 'human' sounds on his instrument," employing "a tone which blasted like a blow torch" and drastically expanding the vocabulary of his horn by employing multiphonics, growling, and "high register squeals [that] could imitate not only the human song but the human cry and shriek as well." John Coltrane_sentence_139

Regarding Coltrane's decision to add Sanders to the band, Gary Giddins wrote "Those who had followed Coltrane to the edge of the galaxy now had the added challenge of a player who appeared to have little contact with earth." John Coltrane_sentence_140

1965–1967: Adding to the quartet John Coltrane_section_8

By late 1965, Coltrane was regularly augmenting his group with Sanders and other free jazz musicians. John Coltrane_sentence_141

Rashied Ali joined the group as a second drummer. John Coltrane_sentence_142

This was the end of the quartet. John Coltrane_sentence_143

Claiming he was unable to hear himself over the two drummers, Tyner left the band shortly after the recording of Meditations. John Coltrane_sentence_144

Jones left in early 1966, dissatisfied by sharing drumming duties with Ali. John Coltrane_sentence_145

After Coltrane's death, Tyner and Jones in interviews expressed displeasure with the music's direction, while incorporating some of the free-jazz form's intensity in their solo work. John Coltrane_sentence_146

There is speculation that in 1965 Coltrane began using LSD, informing the "cosmic" transcendence of his late period. John Coltrane_sentence_147

After the departure of Tyner and Jones, Coltrane led a quintet with Sanders on tenor saxophone, his second wife Alice Coltrane on piano, Garrison on bass, and Ali on drums. John Coltrane_sentence_148

Coltrane and Sanders were described by Nat Hentoff as "speaking in tongues". John Coltrane_sentence_149

When touring, the group was known for playing long versions of their repertoire, many stretching beyond 30 minutes to an hour. John Coltrane_sentence_150

In concert, solos by band members often extended beyond fifteen minutes. John Coltrane_sentence_151

The group can be heard on several concert recordings from 1966, including Live at the Village Vanguard Again! John Coltrane_sentence_152

and Live in Japan. John Coltrane_sentence_153

In 1967, Coltrane entered the studio several times. John Coltrane_sentence_154

Although pieces with Sanders have surfaced (the unusual "To Be" has both men on flute), most of the recordings were either with the quartet minus Sanders (Expression and Stellar Regions) or as a duo with Ali. John Coltrane_sentence_155

The latter duo produced six performances that appear on the album Interstellar Space. John Coltrane_sentence_156

1967: Death John Coltrane_section_9

Coltrane died of liver cancer at the age of 40 on July 17, 1967, at Huntington Hospital on Long Island. John Coltrane_sentence_157

His funeral was held four days later at St. Peter's Lutheran Church in New York City. John Coltrane_sentence_158

The service was started by the Albert Ayler Quartet and finished by the Ornette Coleman Quartet. John Coltrane_sentence_159

Coltrane is buried at Pinelawn Cemetery in Farmingdale, New York. John Coltrane_sentence_160

Biographer Lewis Porter speculated that the cause of Coltrane's illness was hepatitis, although he also attributed the disease to Coltrane's heroin use at a previous period in his life. John Coltrane_sentence_161

Frederick J. Spencer wrote that Coltrane's death could be attributed to his needle use "or the bottle, or both." John Coltrane_sentence_162

He stated that "[t]he needles he used to inject the drugs may have had everything to do with" Coltrane's liver disease: "If any needle was contaminated with the appropriate hepatitis virus, it may have caused a chronic infection leading to cirrhosis or cancer." John Coltrane_sentence_163

He noted that despite Coltrane's "spiritual awakening" in 1957, "[b]y then, he may have had chronic hepatitis and cirrhosis... John Coltrane_sentence_164

Unless he developed a primary focus elsewhere in later life and that spread to his liver, the seeds of John Coltrane’s cancer were sown in his days of addiction." John Coltrane_sentence_165

Coltrane's death surprised many in the music community who were unaware of his condition. John Coltrane_sentence_166

Miles Davis said, "Coltrane's death shocked everyone, took everyone by surprise. John Coltrane_sentence_167

I knew he hadn't looked too good... John Coltrane_sentence_168

But I didn't know he was that sick—or even sick at all." John Coltrane_sentence_169

Instruments John Coltrane_section_10

In 1947, when he joined King Kolax's band, Coltrane switched to tenor saxophone, the instrument he became known for playing. John Coltrane_sentence_170

In the early 1960s, during his engagement with Atlantic, he played soprano saxophone. John Coltrane_sentence_171

His preference for playing melody higher on the range of the tenor saxophone is attributed to his training on alto horn and clarinet. John Coltrane_sentence_172

His "sound concept", manipulated in one's vocal tract, of the tenor was set higher than the normal range of the instrument. John Coltrane_sentence_173

Coltrane also noted how his experience playing the soprano saxophone gradually affected his style on the tenor, stating "the soprano, by being this small instrument, I found that playing the lowest note on it was like playing... one of the middle notes in the tenor... John Coltrane_sentence_174

I found that I would play all over this instrument... And on tenor, I hadn't always played all over it, because I was playing certain ideas which would just run in certain ranges... By playing on the soprano and becoming accustomed to playing from that low B-flat on up, it soon got so when I went to tenor, I found myself doing the same thing... And this caused... the willingness to change and just try to play... as much of the instrument as possible." John Coltrane_sentence_175

According to drummer John Densmore of The Doors, Coltrane was one of the first tenor saxophone players to switch from plastic mouthpieces to metal ones. John Coltrane_sentence_176

Since the tone differs between the two types of mouthpieces, Coltrane compensated by using a stiff No. John Coltrane_sentence_177 5 reed to produce a warmer sound. John Coltrane_sentence_178

Toward the end of his career, he experimented with flute in his live performances and studio recordings (Live at the Village Vanguard Again! John Coltrane_sentence_179 , Expression). John Coltrane_sentence_180

After Eric Dolphy died in June 1964, his mother gave Coltrane his flute and bass clarinet. John Coltrane_sentence_181

According to drummer Rashied Ali, Coltrane had an interest in the drums. John Coltrane_sentence_182

He would often have a spare drum set on concert stages that he would play. John Coltrane_sentence_183

His interest in the drums and his penchant for having solos with the drums resonated on tracks such as "Pursuance" and "The Drum Thing" from A Love Supreme and Crescent, respectively. John Coltrane_sentence_184

It resulted in the album Interstellar Space with Ali. John Coltrane_sentence_185

In an interview with Nat Hentoff in late 1965 or early 1966, Coltrane stated: "I feel the need for more time, more rhythm all around me. John Coltrane_sentence_186

And with more than one drummer, the rhythm can be more multi-directional." John Coltrane_sentence_187

In an August 1966 interview with Frank Kofsky, Coltrane repeatedly emphasized his affinity for drums, saying "I feel so strongly about drums, I really do." John Coltrane_sentence_188

Later that year, Coltrane would record the music released posthumously on Offering: Live at Temple University, which features Ali on drums supplemented by three percussionists. John Coltrane_sentence_189

Coltrane's tenor (Selmer Mark VI, serial number 125571, dated 1965) and soprano (Selmer Mark VI, serial number 99626, dated 1962) saxophones were auctioned on February 20, 2005 to raise money for the John Coltrane Foundation. John Coltrane_sentence_190

Although he rarely played alto, he owned a prototype Yamaha alto saxophone given to him by the company as an endorsement in 1966. John Coltrane_sentence_191

He can be heard playing it on live albums recorded in Japan, such as Second Night in Tokyo, and is pictured using it on the cover of the compilation Live in Japan. John Coltrane_sentence_192

He can also be heard playing the Yamaha alto on the album Stellar Regions. John Coltrane_sentence_193

Personal life and religious beliefs John Coltrane_section_11

Coltrane was born and raised in a Christian home. John Coltrane_sentence_194

He was influenced by religion and spirituality beginning in childhood. John Coltrane_sentence_195

His maternal grandfather, the Reverend William Blair, was a minister at an African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church in High Point, North Carolina, and his paternal grandfather, the Reverend William H. Coltrane, was an A.M.E. Zion minister in Hamlet, North Carolina. John Coltrane_sentence_196

Critic Norman Weinstein noted the parallel between Coltrane's music and his experience in the southern church, which included practicing music there as a youth. John Coltrane_sentence_197

In 1955, Coltrane married Naima (née Juanita Grubbs). John Coltrane_sentence_198

Naima Coltrane, a Muslim convert, heavily influenced his spirituality. John Coltrane_sentence_199

When they married, she had a five-year-old daughter named Antonia, later named Syeeda. John Coltrane_sentence_200

Coltrane adopted Syeeda. John Coltrane_sentence_201

He met Naima at the home of bassist Steve Davis in Philadelphia. John Coltrane_sentence_202

The love ballad he wrote to honor his wife, "Naima", was Coltrane's favorite composition. John Coltrane_sentence_203

In 1956 the couple left Philadelphia with their six-year-old daughter in tow and moved to New York City. John Coltrane_sentence_204

In August 1957, Coltrane, Naima and Syeeda moved into an apartment on 103rd St. and Amsterdam Ave. in New York. John Coltrane_sentence_205

A few years later, John and Naima Coltrane purchased a home at 116-60 Mexico Street in St. John Coltrane_sentence_206 Albans, Queens. John Coltrane_sentence_207

This is the house where they would break up in 1963. John Coltrane_sentence_208

About the break up, Naima said in J. C. Thomas's Chasin' the Trane, "I could feel it was going to happen sooner or later, so I wasn't really surprised when John moved out of the house in the summer of 1963. John Coltrane_sentence_209

He didn't offer any explanation. John Coltrane_sentence_210

He just told me there were things he had to do, and he left only with his clothes and his horns. John Coltrane_sentence_211

He stayed in a hotel sometimes, other times with his mother in Philadelphia. John Coltrane_sentence_212

All he said was, 'Naima, I'm going to make a change.' John Coltrane_sentence_213

Even though I could feel it coming, it hurt, and I didn't get over it for at least another year." John Coltrane_sentence_214

But Coltrane kept a close relationship with Naima, even calling her in 1964 to tell her that 90% of his playing would be prayer. John Coltrane_sentence_215

They remained in touch until his death in 1967. John Coltrane_sentence_216

Naima Coltrane died of a heart attack in October 1996. John Coltrane_sentence_217

In 1957, Coltrane had a religious experience that may have helped him overcome the heroin addiction and alcoholism he had struggled with since 1948. John Coltrane_sentence_218

In the liner notes of A Love Supreme, Coltrane states that in 1957 he experienced "by the grace of God, a spiritual awakening which was to lead me to a richer, fuller, more productive life. John Coltrane_sentence_219

At that time, in gratitude, I humbly asked to be given the means and privilege to make others happy through music." John Coltrane_sentence_220

The liner notes appear to mention God in a Universalist sense and do not advocate one religion over another. John Coltrane_sentence_221

Further evidence of this universal view can be found in the liner notes of Meditations (1965) in which Coltrane declares, "I believe in all religions." John Coltrane_sentence_222

In 1963, he met pianist Alice McLeod. John Coltrane_sentence_223

He and Alice moved in together and had two sons before he became "officially divorced from Naima in 1966, at which time [he] and Alice were immediately married." John Coltrane_sentence_224

John Jr. was born in 1964, Ravi in 1965, and Oranyan ("Oran") in 1967. John Coltrane_sentence_225

According to the musician Peter Lavezzoli, "Alice brought happiness and stability to John's life, not only because they had children, but also because they shared many of the same spiritual beliefs, particularly a mutual interest in Indian philosophy. John Coltrane_sentence_226

Alice also understood what it was like to be a professional musician." John Coltrane_sentence_227

After A Love Supreme, many of the titles of his songs and albums had spiritual connotations: Ascension, Meditations, Om, Selflessness, "Amen", "Ascent", "Attaining", "Dear Lord", "Prayer and Meditation Suite", and "The Father and the Son and the Holy Ghost". John Coltrane_sentence_228

His collection of books included The Gospel of Sri Ramakrishna, the Bhagavad Gita, and Paramahansa Yogananda's Autobiography of a Yogi. John Coltrane_sentence_229

The last of these describes, in Lavezzoli's words, a "search for universal truth, a journey that Coltrane had also undertaken. John Coltrane_sentence_230

Yogananda believed that both Eastern and Western spiritual paths were efficacious, and wrote of the similarities between Krishna and Christ. John Coltrane_sentence_231

This openness to different traditions resonated with Coltrane, who studied the Qur'an, the Bible, Kabbalah, and astrology with equal sincerity." John Coltrane_sentence_232

He also explored Hinduism, Jiddu Krishnamurti, African history, the philosophical teachings of Plato and Aristotle, and Zen Buddhism. John Coltrane_sentence_233

In October 1965, Coltrane recorded Om, referring to the sacred syllable in Hinduism, which symbolizes the infinite or the entire universe. John Coltrane_sentence_234

Coltrane described Om as the "first syllable, the primal word, the word of power". John Coltrane_sentence_235

The 29-minute recording contains chants from the Hindu Bhagavad Gita and the Buddhist Tibetan Book of the Dead, and a recitation of a passage describing the primal verbalization "om" as a cosmic/spiritual common denominator in all things. John Coltrane_sentence_236

Coltrane's spiritual journey was interwoven with his investigation of world music. John Coltrane_sentence_237

He believed in not only a universal musical structure that transcended ethnic distinctions, but also being able to harness the mystical language of music itself. John Coltrane_sentence_238

His study of Indian music led him to believe that certain sounds and scales could "produce specific emotional meanings." John Coltrane_sentence_239

According to Coltrane, the goal of a musician was to understand these forces, control them, and elicit a response from the audience. John Coltrane_sentence_240

He said, "I would like to bring to people something like happiness. John Coltrane_sentence_241

I would like to discover a method so that if I want it to rain, it will start right away to rain. John Coltrane_sentence_242

If one of my friends is ill, I'd like to play a certain song and he will be cured; when he'd be broke, I'd bring out a different song and immediately he'd receive all the money he needed." John Coltrane_sentence_243

Veneration John Coltrane_section_12

John Coltrane_table_infobox_1

Saint John ColtraneJohn Coltrane_header_cell_1_0_0
BornJohn Coltrane_header_cell_1_1_0 (1926-09-23)September 23, 1926

Hamlet, North Carolina, USJohn Coltrane_cell_1_1_1

DiedJohn Coltrane_header_cell_1_2_0 July 17, 1967(1967-07-17) (aged 40)

Huntington, New York, USJohn Coltrane_cell_1_2_1

Venerated inJohn Coltrane_header_cell_1_3_0 African Orthodox Church

Episcopal ChurchJohn Coltrane_cell_1_3_1

CanonizedJohn Coltrane_header_cell_1_4_0 1982, St. John Coltrane Church, 2097 Turk Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94115 by African Orthodox ChurchJohn Coltrane_cell_1_4_1
FeastJohn Coltrane_header_cell_1_5_0 December 8 (AOC)John Coltrane_cell_1_5_1
PatronageJohn Coltrane_header_cell_1_6_0 All ArtistsJohn Coltrane_cell_1_6_1

After Coltrane's death, a congregation called the Yardbird Temple in San Francisco began worshiping him as God incarnate. John Coltrane_sentence_244

The group was named after Charlie Parker, whom they equated to John the Baptist. John Coltrane_sentence_245

The congregation became affiliated with the African Orthodox Church; this involved changing Coltrane's status from a god to a saint. John Coltrane_sentence_246

The resultant St. John Coltrane African Orthodox Church, San Francisco, is the only African Orthodox church that incorporates Coltrane's music and his lyrics as prayers in its liturgy. John Coltrane_sentence_247

Rev. John Coltrane_sentence_248

F. W. King, describing the African Orthodox Church of Saint John Coltrane, said "We are Coltrane-conscious...God dwells in the musical majesty of his sounds." John Coltrane_sentence_249

Samuel G. Freedman wrote in The New York Times that John Coltrane_sentence_250

Coltrane is depicted as one of the 90 saints in the Dancing Saints icon of St. Gregory of Nyssa Episcopal Church in San Francisco. John Coltrane_sentence_251

The icon is a 3,000-square-foot (280 m) painting in the Byzantine iconographic style that wraps around the entire church rotunda. John Coltrane_sentence_252

It was executed by Mark Dukes, an ordained deacon at the Saint John Coltrane African Orthodox Church who painted other icons of Coltrane for the Coltrane Church. John Coltrane_sentence_253

Saint Barnabas Episcopal Church in Newark, New Jersey, included Coltrane on its list of historical black saints and made a "case for sainthood" for him in an article on its website. John Coltrane_sentence_254

Documentaries about Coltrane and the church include Alan Klingenstein's The Church of Saint Coltrane (1996), and a 2004 program presented by Alan Yentob for the BBC. John Coltrane_sentence_255

Selected discography John Coltrane_section_13

Main article: John Coltrane discography John Coltrane_sentence_256

The discography below lists albums conceived and approved by Coltrane as a leader during his lifetime. John Coltrane_sentence_257

It does not include his many releases as a sideman, sessions assembled into albums by various record labels after Coltrane's contract expired, sessions with Coltrane as a sideman later reissued with his name featured more prominently, or posthumous compilations, except for the one he approved before his death. John Coltrane_sentence_258

See main discography link above for full list. John Coltrane_sentence_259

On June 25, 2019, The New York Times Magazine listed John Coltrane among hundreds of artists whose material was reportedly destroyed in the 2008 Universal fire. John Coltrane_sentence_260

Prestige and Blue Note Records John Coltrane_section_14

John Coltrane_unordered_list_0

Atlantic Records John Coltrane_section_15

John Coltrane_unordered_list_1

Impulse! Records John Coltrane_section_16

John Coltrane_unordered_list_2

Sessionography John Coltrane_section_17

Main article: List of John Coltrane recording sessions John Coltrane_sentence_261

Awards and honors John Coltrane_section_18

In 1965, Coltrane was inducted into the Down Beat Jazz Hall of Fame. John Coltrane_sentence_262

In 1972, A Love Supreme was certified gold by the RIAA for selling over half a million copies in Japan. John Coltrane_sentence_263

This album was certified gold in the United States in 2001. John Coltrane_sentence_264

In 1982 he was awarded a posthumous Grammy for Best Jazz Solo Performance on the album Bye Bye Blackbird, and in 1997 he was awarded the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. John Coltrane_sentence_265

In 2002, scholar Molefi Kete Asante named him one of his 100 Greatest African Americans. John Coltrane_sentence_266

He was awarded a special Pulitzer Prize in 2007 citing his "masterful improvisation, supreme musicianship and iconic centrality to the history of jazz." John Coltrane_sentence_267

He was inducted into the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame in 2009. John Coltrane_sentence_268

A former home, the John Coltrane House in Philadelphia, was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1999. John Coltrane_sentence_269

His last home, the John Coltrane Home in the Dix Hills district of Huntington, New York, where he resided from 1964 until his death, was added to the National Register of Historic Places on June 29, 2007. John Coltrane_sentence_270

Their son Ravi, named after Ravi Shankar, is also a saxophonist. John Coltrane_sentence_271

The parent company of Impulse!, from 1965 to 1979 known as ABC Records, purged much of its unreleased material in the 1970s. John Coltrane_sentence_272

An early documentary on Jazz was made in 1990 by fellow musician Robert Palmer, called The World According to John Coltrane. John Coltrane_sentence_273

Chasing Trane: The John Coltrane Documentary, is a 2016 American film directed by John Scheinfeld. John Coltrane_sentence_274

Narrated by Denzel Washington, the film chronicles the life of Coltrane in his own words and includes interviews with such admirers as Wynton Marsalis, Sonny Rollins, Bill Clinton, and Cornel West. John Coltrane_sentence_275


Credits to the contents of this page go to the authors of the corresponding Wikipedia page: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John Coltrane.