JOHN COLTRANE (September 23, 1926 – July 17, 1967)
American jazz saxophonist and composer who was a pioneer in the development of modal jazz and hard bop.
1957: Album “Blue Train” released
1960: Album “Giant Steps” released
1964: Album “A Love Supreme” released
Considered one of the greatest saxophonists in the history of jazz, John Coltrane was a pioneer in the development of modal jazz and hard bop. His innovative and virtuosic playing style, as well as his groundbreaking compositions, have had a profound influence on jazz and music as a whole.
Born in Hamlet, North Carolina, Coltrane grew up in a musical family and started playing the saxophone at an early age. He attended William Penn High School, where he played in the school’s marching band, and later studied music at the Granoff Studios in Philadelphia.
Coltrane’s professional career began in the late 1940s, when he played with various bands and artists, including Dizzy Gillespie and Earl Bostic. In 1955, he joined the Miles Davis Quintet, where he played alongside some of the most talented and influential musicians of the time, including pianist Red Garland and drummer Philly Joe Jones.
Coltrane’s time with the Miles Davis Quintet was crucial to his development as a musician. He honed his skills as a soloist and composer, and began to develop his own distinctive style. In 1957, he released his first album as a leader, “Blue Train,” which was a critical and commercial success.
Coltrane’s career continued to thrive in the following years, and he released several more influential albums, including “Giant Steps” (1960) and “My Favorite Things” (1961). He also played with a number of notable musicians, including Thelonious Monk, Eric Dolphy, and McCoy Tyner.
In 1964, Coltrane released his most famous and critically acclaimed album, “A Love Supreme,” which is considered a masterpiece of jazz. The album, which was recorded in a single session, features Coltrane’s innovative and expressive playing, as well as his deeply spiritual and introspective compositions.
Coltrane’s later years were marked by his increasing interest in spirituality and his experimentation with free jazz and other avant-garde styles. He continued to tour and record until his death in 1967 at the age of 40.
John Coltrane’s innovative playing and composing style, as well as his contributions to the development of modal jazz and hard bop, have had a profound influence on jazz and music as a whole. He is considered one of the greatest saxophonists in the history of jazz, and his music continues to inspire and influence musicians and listeners around the world.