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Today in Music – 1967 – John Coltrane passed away (not)…. and the jazz world still mourns..

John Coltrane

According to About.com/Oldies Music, on this date in 1967, the jazz world lost a legendary figure when John Coltrane died from liver cancer at the age of forty. (The actual date of his death is July 17th) Coltrane was and still is one of the most influential jazz musician, ever. I have never been a big fan of the sax, most of my jazz listening revolves around guitar, organ and vibes, but every time I hear Coltrane’s music I love it. From Wikipedia:

John William Coltrane, also known as “Trane” (September 23, 1926 – July 17, 1967[1]), was an American jazz saxophonist and composer. Working in the bebop and hard bop idioms early in his career, Coltrane helped pioneer the use of modes in jazz and later was at the forefront of free jazz. He organized at least fifty recording sessions as a leader during his recording career, and appeared as a sideman on many other albums, notably with trumpeter Miles Davis and pianist Thelonious Monk.

As his career progressed, Coltrane and his music took on an increasingly spiritual dimension. His second wife was pianist Alice Coltrane and their son Ravi Coltrane is also a saxophonist. Coltrane influenced innumerable musicians, and remains one of the most significant saxophonists in jazz history. He received many posthumous awards and recognitions, including canonization by the African Orthodox Church as Saint John William Coltrane. In 2007, Coltrane was awarded the Pulitzer Prize Special Citation for his “masterful improvisation, supreme musicianship and iconic centrality to the history of jazz.”[2] Continue Reading

and from the man himself:

My music is the spiritual expression of what I am – my faith, my knowledge, my being … When you begin to see the possibilities of music, you desire to do something really good for people, to help humanity free itself from its hangups … I want to speak to their souls. ∞

and from All That Jazz (Thinkquest.org)

“Since Coltrane’s passing no other giant has dominated jazz on the same level. In fact many other saxophonists have built their entire careers on exploring music from just one of John Coltrane’s periods.”

So I think tonight is another jazz night, as I turn the lights down, and put on Blue Train or A Love Supreme as I finish my book. (Maybe one album tonight and another Wednesday night, yeah that’s the ticket)

But for now let’s go “Into the Night” with John Coltrane and Miles Davis playing “So What”