Friday, September 23, 2005

John Coltrane: Real Jazz

Today would have been John Coltrane's 79th birthday. I lament his early passing at age 40 in 1967, as do so many jazz lovers. His relentless dedication to his art, his willingness to always grow and take risks musically, and his utter brillance as a composer and musician should never be forgotten. Even if John Coltrane has no place in The World to Come, I believe much of his music will be there as a testimony to aesthetic genius, one of God's manifold gifts. Much of his music requires a cultivated taste to fully appreciate, but once you really hear the cry of his soul coming through the horn, you will never forget it. And you will never listen to Kenny G again. Selah.


Joe said...

Coltrane became one of my favorites two years ago. I was just celebrating Sonny Rollins birthday earlier this month. Now that you've put me in the mood, I'm going to put on "A Love Supreme."

Douglas Groothuis, Ph.D. said...

I think "A Love Supreme" is the ultimate jazz recording. I lament that Coltrane's theology was so mixed up, however. Toward the end he was even taking LSD and chanting Ohm. Very sad. Let this music remains.

Douglas Groothuis, Ph.D. said...

I meant to say, "Yet his music remains." You cannot edit your own posts!

BJS said...

Dr. Truth,

As I have mentioned to you before, my wife has the honor of sharing her birthday with the great Coltrane. Unfortunately, she is not yet that into jazz, and I am not myself educated enough to give her proper introduction to the material. All that being said, my little sister also just had her first born son on September 23rd. So I have a wife and a nephew both born on the 23rd. It is quite a special day, indeed.

Matthew Westerholm said...

My personal favorite is Crescent. Slightly less known, but perhaps even better than A Love Supreme...
To paraphrase the hymn:

"This is my Father's world:
He shines in all that's fair;
in 'Sheets of Sound', praise does resound;
he speaks to me everywhere."