Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Coltrane on Coltrane (edited by Chris DeVito)

Coltrane on Coltrane

Edited by Chris DeVito

Chicago Review Press 2010
This is the first time I write about a book on this blog but if anything good came out of the appendix break it's that I had finally time to finish some reading I'd been planning for quite a long time

I remember the first time I've heard John Coltrane's duo cd with Rashied Ali, that was how it all started for me. I had listened before to Coltrane with Davis, I had heard and loved "Love Supreme" but when I heard "Interstellar Space" I knew, somehow, I felt touched by this music. It was free, powerfull, deeply spiritual. I felt liberated, empowered.

Coltrane spoke through his music in particularly clear way. He didn't have much need for words. But when he did use them he did it wisely. This book gathers together all available Coltrane's interviews, covering most of his career span and diversified topics. The power of his spirit speaks through the modesty in which Coltrane expresses his thoughts. In addition to the interviews (some of them newly transcribed from the surviving audio tapes) Chris DeVito collects a number of liner notes and short articles about Coltrane which gives the reader a more complete feeling of the era.

Enlightning and fascinating reading. Easily recommended, belongs in any jazz collection.

My goal is to live the truly religous life and express it iny my music. If you live it, when you play there's no problem because the music is just part of the whole thing. To be a musician is really something, it goes very, very deep. My music is the spiritual expression of what I am - my faith, my knowledge, my being - John Coltrane quoted in Paul Zimmerman's "The New Jazz" in Newsweek 12.12.1966

Here's an audio recording of the interview with Frank Kofsky which can be found in the book.

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