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Thread: Anyone else here 'dislikes' John Coltrane?

  1. #91
    Registered User John L's Avatar
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    I love Coltrane, myself.

    But it should be noted that a lot of jazz fans and critics in the 50s and 60s did not connect with Coltrane at all. His approach was called "ugly," "unmusical," you name it.

    And actually, I can understand the reaction. Coltrane was a very different approach (I say "was" because his approach later became a standard approach in jazz). Even today, I don't see why all jazz fans have to like him.

  2. #92
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    And Van Gogh never sold a painting in his life time and so on....I don't get the point of this thread. So much of the past and far too little of the present. Let's join hands and contact the living!

  3. #93
    AAJ's Big Nose jkelman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Norem View Post
    Every "great" jazz musician is over-rated. To use any hyperbole is to over-rate.
    True.


    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Norem View Post
    There's no question that Coltrane was a master of the tenor saxophone. He was very creative with the way he improvised his lines. He followed his own path, which led him to playing music that I personally did not care for at all.
    Truer (whether or not we find a particular period - or any period, for that matter - of Coltrane's music personally resonant).

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Norem View Post
    Most of all, like Louis Armstrong, Coleman Hawkins, Charlie Parker, Max Roach and Miles Davis, he created a sound that epitomized the instrument he played, a sound that many, many tenor players sought to emulate. He was one of the most influential jazz musicians of all time, and that's why he has his place in the history books.
    Truest!

    Seriously, to me it's not an issue of whether or not we like someone, because that's personal taste. But there has to be a way to divorce one's personal taste from the more objective (and, in the case of Coltrane, pretty indisputable) truth of an artist's significance. Coltrane has, as Jay says, been one of the most influential saxophonists of the past 40-50 years, so like him or not, it's hard to deny that.

    Best!

    John

  4. #94
    Where Dead Voices Gather Alexander's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Noj View Post
    I think I'd love Coltrane if I'd only heard "Naima" and none of his other great music.
    Seconded. "Naima" is one of the very few truly perfect pieces of recorded music. That and "A Love Supreme." I've often said that, if I could have my choice, "A Love Supreme" is the music I'd like to be listening to when I die. It is perhaps the most ecstatic music ever recorded.
    Come visit Where Dead Voices Gather; the blog and the podcast!

  5. #95
    Where Dead Voices Gather Alexander's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by papsrus View Post
    One thing about Coltrane that can't be overlooked from a listener's point of view is the rapid change he and his music went through over a relatively short period of time. In a little over 10 years from the mid-50s to the mid-60s, he cut a very wide swath through jazz. Following that musical journey is an education in itself.

    Perhaps to those who find his music uninteresting (and there's nothing wrong with that) it's difficult to reconcile his impact on the music with their own personal ambivalence toward his music.
    I can easily see a person not LIKING Trane, but I cannot imagine anyone finding him UNINTERESTING...
    Come visit Where Dead Voices Gather; the blog and the podcast!

  6. #96
    Administrator Justin V's Avatar
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    I thought about this thread while on Pandora and 'Welcome' from 'Transition' came on. Coltrane isn't even on my artist list, he just pops up like a jazz version of whack-a-mole. I don't have a lot of Coltrane (Mating Call, A Love Supreme, Lush Life, Kind of Blue, Meditations, Duke Ellington and John Coltrane,Workin', and the Paul Chambers Mosaic select, well, shit maybe I do have a bit of Coltrane), but this one grabbed my attention. Any opinions?

    The one track I heard made me wonder what Coltrane would have been like with Andrew Hill.

  7. #97
    Registered User Borys_Pomianek's Avatar
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    Well i wont really elaborate on what i think about the subject but instead:

    I dont listen to coltrane on a daily basis but when i want to learn a new standard and i find a recording of it done by him then i go with that.

    Cheers

  8. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jay Norem View Post
    Every "great" jazz musician is over-rated. To use any hyperbole is to over-rate.
    There's no question that Coltrane was a master of the tenor saxophone. He was very creative with the way he improvised his lines. He followed his own path, which led him to playing music that I personally did not care for at all.
    Most of all, like Louis Armstrong, Coleman Hawkins, Charlie Parker, Max Roach and Miles Davis, he created a sound that epitomized the instrument he played, a sound that many, many tenor players sought to emulate.
    He was one of the most influential jazz musicians of all time, and that's why he has his place in the history books.
    Maybe I need to clarify......you know when certain jazz artists(Ellington, Coltrane, Miles) have 100s of different recordings to choose from it just seems to me that alot of the music comes out being shallow/lacking depth....you know this or that guy has all this stuff out because he is deemed as being great but to what purpose was/is it....that's probably why I don't own any Miles, Coltrane, or Ellington for example even though I had some of there recordings on LP when I was a teenager. IMHO I don't believe that any jazz or other musician has on average more than 1 good record per year in him/her. All this prolific output being put out by certain artists today(anthony braxton immediately comes to mind)doesn't make that artist any more special to me than anyone else and in fact might discourage me more from buying any of there stuff.

  9. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by philoxenos View Post
    I'd like to know why we have to 'like' music to make it worthwhile to listen to. I listen to music that I wouldn't classify as likeable, because it expresses unlikeable things. Music isn't limited to expressing only the beautiful and nice things in life. If you only listen to music that is pretty, you are limiting your experience, listening just for escapism maybe?

    Music expresses truths that words cannot. Coltrane expresses deep things that aren't always easy to acknowledge or digest. If it makes you uncomfortable, thats part of the truth of it.

    Music isn't about pleasing your senses first and foremost, although some prefer that definition because there's no challenge and difficult music can be dismissed as noise.

    Bach is similiar to Coltrane in this regard, he had his simple stuff that would make it to the hit parade but he also has his dark side: Bach cantatas that express pain and longing and thoughts about death and suffering can be very unpalatable, but thats appropriate, is it not?


    Great point... I think most of us are guilty of listening to music solely for aesthetic reasons.

    But what if you find 'beauty' in the dark, painful and uncomfortable "noise," as well?
    "When I die I want them to play The Black and Crazy Blues, I want to be cremated, put in a bag of pot and I want beautiful people to smoke me and hope they get something out of it." - Roland Kirk

  10. #100
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    Quote Originally Posted by 77frenchtv View Post
    Maybe I need to clarify......you know when certain jazz artists(Ellington, Coltrane, Miles) have 100s of different recordings to choose from it just seems to me that alot of the music comes out being shallow/lacking depth....you know this or that guy has all this stuff out because he is deemed as being great but to what purpose was/is it....that's probably why I don't own any Miles, Coltrane, or Ellington for example even though I had some of there recordings on LP when I was a teenager. IMHO I don't believe that any jazz or other musician has on average more than 1 good record per year in him/her. All this prolific output being put out by certain artists today(anthony braxton immediately comes to mind)doesn't make that artist any more special to me than anyone else and in fact might discourage me more from buying any of there stuff.
    I hear ya... I think prolificity in and of itself is very overrated... just because somebody produces a lot of work doesn't mean they're 'great'... it could all be a huge pile of manure... however, I do disagree for the most part, that an artist usually has no more than 1 great work in him/her per year.

    I think more works were regarded as great or classic back in the day because genres were just forming.. and the artists were making genre-defining works... nowadays, your statement may be more true because most genres are already set and there are few who are pushing those boundaries.
    "When I die I want them to play The Black and Crazy Blues, I want to be cremated, put in a bag of pot and I want beautiful people to smoke me and hope they get something out of it." - Roland Kirk

  11. #101
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    Quote Originally Posted by philoxenos View Post
    Bach is similiar to Coltrane in this regard, he had his simple stuff that would make it to the hit parade
    Huh???

  12. #102
    pno, mrmba, stlpan, perc. philoxenos's Avatar
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    Smile

    Quote Originally Posted by Tom K View Post
    Huh???
    Music by Bach on the classical 'hit' parade includes: 'air on a g string', 'toccata in d', 'sheep my safely graze', 'ave maria' (he composed the chord progression if not the melody).

    Otherwise Bach can be a difficult cat to listen to. Try his last composition, the 'art of fugue', or his 'b minor mass', or many of the cantatas that deal with dense subjects.

    Lots of composers give us their profound music towards the end of their life, Beethoven's last string quartets or another example. So, Coltrane is in good company.
    "And always, there is the need to keep purifying these feelings and sounds so that we can really see what we've discovered in its pure state. So that we can see more and more clearly what we are. In that way, we can give to those who listen the essence, the best of what we are. But to do that at each stage, we have to keep on cleaning the mirror...."
    - John Coltrane

  13. #103
    Registered User innercircle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Morphyne View Post
    Funny, inner circle posted the same messages on the Steve Hoffman forum, and here's Mr. Hoffman's take:



    *sigh*...
    Yeah I did the same question there, but it was after I did it here, and I am "older" in the SH Forums.

    I did the question here and there trying to search what I found, really, I have to thank to everyone who has replied to this thread, I've ever read every post even when I didn't quote it, this thread has been very educative to me.

    Thanks for all the input friends.

    Oh and BTW after all in the SH Forums the input was great also.
    I have no all the music, just the best!

  14. #104
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    I don't pretend to understand Trane's post-classic quartet music, but everything up to that period (post-classic quartet) I'm all over! If he's not THE greatest tenor saxophonist of all-time, he's ONE of the greatest. But yeah, I'd put him at #1 personally and that even with not understanding the later material.


  15. #105
    Registered User murphythecat's Avatar
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    For me, those 2 albums cant be dislike, and if you do dislike them, its your fault
    I suggest that you listen to them until you love them. Im sure youll eventually happen to love:

    giant steps
    a love supreme



    I have most of coltrane output. I can understand not liking blue train, some of his prestige stuff, some pre-64 stuff. I dont listen often to ascension or OM.

    With coltrane, you have to follow him by period.
    Coltrane with miles davis is arguably his best 50's output. He really shines with Miles.

    Its hard to pin point exactly, but I had to make some choices.

    I would suggest for his early years (55 to 57)
    Lush life
    tenor madness
    mating call

    then atlantic years:
    Giant steps
    ole
    coltrane's sound

    impulse:
    1963 stuff!!!!!!!! 63 is his most powerful years imo. hartman, birdland, live, etc...
    africa
    love supreme
    kulu se mama
    interstellar space
    meditations first
    expression:
    The solo he makes in the title song is definitely the most heartbracking solo. he died 2 month after the recording. Coltrane was heading in some special place musically. I think that if coltrane had lived 3 more years, we would have had another "love supreme" type of output. the solo in expression is beyond any musician. If a musician tells me he doesnt like coltrane after that, no, if any musician is not in any reveration and total adoration after this solo, I say that you just dont understand man and that you are to blame, not coltrane!



    if you dont like coltrane after those gems, well revisit until you like it

    I can understand that you dont like every period, but not liking any period doesnt make sense to me at all.
    Coltrane is the most impressive musician I know. He is the most aggressive and the most emotionnaly intense player. Yet he plays with such intelligence and original ideas. Coltrane is really special imo as a individual. His years of practise definitely shows in the way he phrases. He is so original, yet classic at the same time.
    His sheer emotion really touch my soul good sometimes. I can go days without listening to coltrane stuff, but when coltrane hit home, he hit hard and good!
    He is definitly in my top 3 favorite musician of all time.

    enjoy
    “Me only have one ambition, y'know. I only have one thing I really like to see happen. I like to see mankind live together - black, white, Chinese, everyone - that's all.”
    ― Bob Marley

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