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the recording patrimony of modern jazz would be embarrassing in its paucity were it not for thousands of European

recordings often initiated as radio and television broadcasts, and in most cases drawn from public concert performances.

 

 

John Coltrane CDs:

 Ascension  /  Ballads  /  Best of John Coltrane / Impressions / My Favorite Things  / Selflessness  / A Love Supreme  / Giant Steps  Meditations 

Kulu Se Mama  /  Interstellar Space  / The Complete Africa/Brass Sessions  / Stellar Regions  / Expression / Afro Blue Impressions

Coltrane Complete Live in Stuttgart 1963

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John Coltrane Stuttgart 1963

By Kalamu ya Salaam

 

This is the quantum physics of jazz—music of explosive power that shatters preconceptions and forces whole new formulations of what the music can and should sound like. All who knew Coltrane describe him as a gentle man, and no one ever described him as angry or “militant.” Coltrane’s music however, especially during the sixties, was often anything but gentle, and because of the stylistic firestorm he created, Trane was often accused of destroying the basis of modern jazz. In fact, articles and interviews in Downbeat, the leading jazz magazine of Coltrane’s era, sometimes described Coltrane’s music as “anti-jazz.”

Had Coltrane not had a profound influence on numerous musicians, the controversy about his music would have been personal and limited, much as was the situation with critical and popular reactions to saxophonist Albert Ayler. Coltrane however was revered as an innovator (some argued "genius") and leader of the sixties avant garde movement in jazz.
Coltrane championed many younger musicians. Archie Shepp and Pharoah Sanders are two in particular who went on to have long and important careers following their introduction to wider audiences by John Coltrane.

Coltrane reintroduced and popularized the soprano saxophone in jazz. After his artistic and popular success with “My Favorite Things,” the use of the soprano as a second or supplemental horn became de rigueur, if not in many instances mandatory, for modern jazz tenor saxophonists. However, beyond influencing personalities and establishing trends, Coltrane’s major contribution was the broadening and deepening of the harmonic and rhythmic basis of modern jazz. Indeed, in a number of cases, specific approaches to both standards and originals were noted as utilizing “Coltrane changes.” A new prevalence of 3/4 and 6/8 rhythms was also attributed to Coltrane as popularized in songs such as “My Favorite Things” and “Afro-Blue.”

Coltrane was the most influential jazz musician in the sixties until his death in the summer of 1967. Although he recorded prolifically for Impulse records (a label sometimes referred to as “the house that Trane built”), the majority of those recordings were studio sessions, which were in most cases refinements and/or summations of what Coltrane had been working on musically, and as such they tended to be elegant and carefully crafted even when they were controversial, as was the case with the Ascension sessions.

Allow me a brief digression: it turns out that there were two takes of Ascension and that after the initial release, at Coltrane’s insistence the other session was released. The problem was there was no notation that there were two different sessions except for the session numbers scratched into the vinyl disc around the label. The music itself was so wild and wooly that most people could not tell the difference. Only years after Coltrane’s death was a double CD set released that described the initial process and the two different takes.

Ascension was iconoclastic music from John Coltrane in a large ensemble, Impulse probably figured that’s all people needed to know. My point however, is that despite Coltrane’s obvious importance and influence, Impulse records did not accord him maximum respect as an artist, nor did they make major efforts to record Coltrane in performance. In fact, after 1965, live recordings were a rarity except for bootlegs and unofficial recordings from Japan and Europe. And that brings us to the 1963 Stuttgart sessions that is the focus of this week’s Mixtape. I’ve said it before and it bears repeating, the recording patrimony of modern jazz would be embarrassing in its paucity were it not for thousands of European recordings often initiated as radio and television broadcasts, and in most cases drawn from public concert performances.

How meager would be the examples of what the music sounded like in performance were it not European fans of the music. With a musician of the reputation and prowess of John Coltrane, it is a shocking example of mainstream disrespect and disdain that there are not more live recordings of Coltrane available. The Stuttgart sessions contain over an hour of previously unreleased Coltrane performances. The 28-minute version of “Impressions” included on the Mixtape is one of those previously unreleased performances—and, oh, what a performance it is. 

The raw power and awe-inspiring stamina of live Coltrane is often exhausting just to listen in as Coltrane takes flight on quarter-hour and longer solo excursions that often ended up being duets/duels with drummer Elvin Jones. I referred earlier to quantum physics, when you listen to Coltrane and Jones engage each other in classic performances what you hearing is both a fusion and fission of modern music.

Coltrane and Jones are so closely in-tune with each other that a steady 4/4 beat is not necessary to feel the pulse of their music, but at the same time they seem to be clawing away at every restraint, literally blowing and beating away all constraints and conventions: Coltrane summoning banshee howls and guttural oaths designed to unleash a tumult of emotions, while Jones artistically pounds out a torrent of poly-rhythms at a pace and with an intensity still unmatched by any other drummer. “Impressions” is a prime example of the aforementioned description of Coltrane’s music.
 
The first half of “Impressions” features a fine solo by pianist McCoy Tyner followed by one of the best Jimmy Garrison bass solos ever recorded but then Mr. Trane soars in on his saxophone and hold on tight, this is going to be one of the rides of your life. To me what is so startling about this particular solo is the harmonic clarity. If you are at all familiar with modern jazz, you will have little difficulty following the harmonic progression even as you marvel at the raw power of Coltrane’s solo, which never lets up. Also included on the Mixtape is a beautiful take on Mongo Santamaria’s “Afro-Blue,” a song popularized by Coltrane and very often erroneously attributed to Coltrane’s authorship.

Recorded November 4, 1963 at the end of a fall tour of Europe, the Stuttgart sessions is absolutely brilliant and absolutely required for any serious Coltrane collection. Although this was not an official recording sessions, the sound quality is good (I would have preferred more snare and tom-toms from Jones and slightly less cymbals, but that is a mere quibble). This is of much better audio quality than many other bootlegs from that era and for that alone we are thankful. But beyond the audio quality is the fact that the music itself is sterling. Coltrane freaks unite! We have another flag to proudly fly.

Source: Breath of Life

posted 25 November 2011 

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music website > http://www.kalamu.com/bol/
writing website > http://wordup.posterous.com/
daily blog > http://kalamu.posterous.com
twitter > http://twitter.com/neogriot
facebook > http://www.facebook.com/kalamu.salaam

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John Coltrane Quartet 1963 Afro-Blue  / John Coltrane—Impressions, 1963

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AALBC.com's 25 Best Selling Books


 

Fiction

#1 - Justify My Thug by Wahida Clark
#2 - Flyy Girl by Omar Tyree
#3 - Head Bangers: An APF Sexcapade by Zane
#4 - Life Is Short But Wide by J. California Cooper
#5 - Stackin' Paper 2 Genesis' Payback by Joy King
#6 - Thug Lovin' (Thug 4) by Wahida Clark
#7 - When I Get Where I'm Going by Cheryl Robinson
#8 - Casting the First Stone by Kimberla Lawson Roby
#9 - The Sex Chronicles: Shattering the Myth by Zane

#10 - Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 - Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 - Don't Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

#13 - For colored girls who have considered suicide  by Ntozake Shange

#14 - For the Love of Money : A Novel by Omar Tyree

#15 - Homemade Loves  by J. California Cooper

#16 - The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

#17 - Player Haters by Carl Weber

#18 - Purple Panties: An Eroticanoir.com Anthology by Sidney Molare

#19 - Stackin' Paper by Joy King

#20 - Children of the Street: An Inspector Darko Dawson Mystery by Kwei Quartey

#21 - The Upper Room by Mary Monroe

#22 – Thug Matrimony  by Wahida Clark

#23 - Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

#24 - Married Men by Carl Weber

#25 - I Dreamt I Was in Heaven - The Rampage of the Rufus Buck Gang by Leonce Gaiter

Non-fiction

#1 - Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention by Manning Marable
#2 - Confessions of a Video Vixen by Karrine Steffans
#3 - Dear G-Spot: Straight Talk About Sex and Love by Zane
#4 - Letters to a Young Brother: MANifest Your Destiny by Hill Harper
#5 - Peace from Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You're Going Through by Iyanla Vanzant
#6 - Selected Writings and Speeches of Marcus Garvey by Marcus Garvey
#7 - The Ebony Cookbook: A Date with a Dish by Freda DeKnight
#8 - The Isis Papers: The Keys to the Colors by Frances Cress Welsing
#9 - The Mis-Education of the Negro by Carter Godwin Woodson

#10 - John Henrik Clarke and the Power of Africana History  by Ahati N. N. Toure

#11 - Fail Up: 20 Lessons on Building Success from Failure by Tavis Smiley

#12 -The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander

#13 - The Black Male Handbook: A Blueprint for Life by Kevin Powell

#14 - The Other Wes Moore: One Name, Two Fates by Wes Moore

#15 - Why Men Fear Marriage: The Surprising Truth Behind Why So Many Men Can't Commit  by RM Johnson

#16 - Black Titan: A.G. Gaston and the Making of a Black American Millionaire by Carol Jenkins

#17 - Brainwashed: Challenging the Myth of Black Inferiority by Tom Burrell

#18 - A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose by Eckhart Tolle

#19 - John Oliver Killens: A Life of Black Literary Activism by Keith Gilyard

#20 - Alain L. Locke: The Biography of a Philosopher by Leonard Harris

#21 - Age Ain't Nothing but a Number: Black Women Explore Midlife by Carleen Brice

#22 - 2012 Guide to Literary Agents by Chuck Sambuchino
#23 - Chicken Soup for the Prisoner's Soul by Tom Lagana
#24 - 101 Things Every Boy/Young Man of Color Should Know by LaMarr Darnell Shields

#25 - Beyond the Black Lady: Sexuality and the New African American Middle Class  by Lisa B. Thompson

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Sex at the Margins

Migration, Labour Markets and the Rescue Industry

By Laura María Agustín

This book explodes several myths: that selling sex is completely different from any other kind of work, that migrants who sell sex are passive victims and that the multitude of people out to save them are without self-interest. Laura Agustín makes a passionate case against these stereotypes, arguing that the label 'trafficked' does not accurately describe migrants' lives and that the 'rescue industry' serves to disempower them. Based on extensive research amongst both migrants who sell sex and social helpers, Sex at the Margins provides a radically different analysis. Frequently, says Agustin, migrants make rational choices to travel and work in the sex industry, and although they are treated like a marginalised group they form part of the dynamic global economy. Both powerful and controversial, this book is essential reading for all those who want to understand the increasingly important relationship between sex markets, migration and the desire for social justice. "Sex at the Margins rips apart distinctions between migrants, service work and sexual labour and reveals the utter complexity of the contemporary sex industry. This book is set to be a trailblazer in the study of sexuality."—Lisa Adkins, University of London

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The New Jim Crow

Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness

By Michele Alexander

Contrary to the rosy picture of race embodied in Barack Obama's political success and Oprah Winfrey's financial success, legal scholar Alexander argues vigorously and persuasively that [w]e have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it. Jim Crow and legal racial segregation has been replaced by mass incarceration as a system of social control (More African Americans are under correctional control today... than were enslaved in 1850). Alexander reviews American racial history from the colonies to the Clinton administration, delineating its transformation into the war on drugs. She offers an acute analysis of the effect of this mass incarceration upon former inmates who will be discriminated against, legally, for the rest of their lives, denied employment, housing, education, and public benefits. Most provocatively, she reveals how both the move toward colorblindness and affirmative action may blur our vision of injustice: most Americans know and don't know the truth about mass incarceration—but her carefully researched, deeply engaging, and thoroughly readable book should change that.—Publishers Weekly

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The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery / George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of Haiti 

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update 5 April 2012

 

 

 

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Related files: A Love Supreme   Breathing Low & Steady  John Coltrane Bio   Blue Train  Kalamu ya Salaam, "Alabama"   Elegy for Thelonious