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BUDDY COLLETTE Original Jazz Classics 239 Man Of Many Parts ● CD $12.98
Parts was recorded in 1956, and originally released as Contemporary 3522. The title refers to the fact that the pioneering cool jazz flutist plays alto and tenor sax, clarinet and flute, depending on the cut. Working within a small combo of Ernie Freeman (pno), Gerald Wilson (tpt), Max Albright (dm), Red Callender (bs), Barney Kessel (gtr) and others, Buddy shines on the mostly self-composed numbers. This reissue includes the original liner notes and comments on each song by Buddy. A winner. (JC)

JOHN COLTRANE Atlantic 1373 Ole' ● CD $12.98
Reissue of 1961 recording, with Coltrane's working quartet augmented by Eric Dolphy, Freddie Hubbard and Art Davis. This same core group, with its unusual double-bass configuration, recorded the brilliant Africa Brass sessions for Impulse that same year; and a similar feeling of soulful earthiness is maintained here. In contrast to that work, the playing here is generally "in the tradition", with more or less conventional solos sticking close to the changes, rather than the more expansive modal improvising that 'Trane was developing at the time. Nice flute work by Dolphy, matched by fine soprano sax from Coltrane on two of the four cuts. To Her Ladyship is a spellbinding CD-only cut, previously released on Atlantic's The Coltrane Legacy. (MB)

JOHN COLTRANE Blue Note 84461-2 Coltrane Time ● CD $12.98
Blue Note reissue of a jazz summit meeting with a twisted history. Recorded in 1958 as a Cecil Taylor date, these four extended structures were originally on United Artists as an LP titled Stereo Drive. On that album was a famous tenor saxophonist called "Blue Train", then under contract to another label. This has been reissued in various forms since coming out in 1962 as a Coltrane date, presumably for commercial rather than musical reasons. The two originals Shifting Down/ Double Clutching are important documents of black jazz in transition, with 'Trane and trumpeter Kenny Dorham spurred on by Cecil Taylor's jagged Monkisms. Also includes the standards Just Friends/ Like Someone In Love. (MB)

JOHN COLTRANE Blue Note 99175-2 The Art Of John Coltrane ● CD $12.98
Looks like Blue Note has a new reissue series going with their "Art Of..." packaging. Producer Michael Cuscuna, who has singlehandedly revitalized the whole Blue Note label, has done another great job here, compiling 8 meaty performances from the late 50's. The lack of original release info is frustrating, but I'm pretty sure the bubbly Moment's Notice was on Coltrane's 1957 Blue Train LP (his only date as a leader) along with the Miles-ish title cut. His Parker-inspired Just For The Love is jagged and futuristic, yet he takes a very low key approach to Bird's own Dexterity, sharing solo space with the amazing bassist Paul Chambers. The same session (Jazz Delegation From The East?) yielded Trane's Blues, where we can hear his long tenor lines growing amidst the bluesy swagger of pianist Kenny Drew. And that's leader Cecil Taylor skittering over the keys on the edgy Shifting Down that ends this satisfying silver slice. 8 cuts in all. (MB)

JOHN COLTRANE Impulse GRD 102 Live In Japan ● CD $47.98
Sure, I'm up to listen to four hours of frenzied jazz blowing, but are you? A year before his death, Coltrane toured Japan with a mostly new group - Pharoah Sanders, his wife Alice Coltrane, Jimmy Garrison and Rashied Ali. Only two of these extended pieces were ever issued here (Peace On Earth/ Leo, broken up over four sides of a 2-LP Impulse set). A couple of numbers approach hour-length status (Crescent/ My Favorite Things), and we also get the rare chance to hear Trane and Sanders on alto saxes. Taken as a whole, these six live cuts are a lengthy memorial to Coltrane's unceasing creativity and lifetime of achievements. (MB)

JOHN COLTRANE Impulse GRD 118 First Meditations ● CD $11.98
6 tracks, 52 min., recommended. First Meditations (1965) documents Coltrane's final creative transition. This 5-part suite (released as Impulse 9332), is one of the last works by the Tyner/ Garrison/ Jones quartet - three months later a version was recorded with Pharoah Sanders and Rashied Ali, and shortly after that Tyner and Jones left. The overall feeling is less volatile than other works of the period, starting and ending with long lyrical solos. An alternate later take of Joy ends the disc with lots of uninhibited swing and an epic bass solo. (MB)

JOHN COLTRANE Impulse GRD 119 A John Coltrane Retrospective - The Impulse Years ● CD $39.98
Are there any newcomers to Coltrane's 60's recordings out there? For them, or anyone in need of a moderately-sized sampling of the tenor masters' most progressive years, this is a great package. 24 chronological selections span 3 CD's, giving a clear picture of 'Trane's innovations during his last six years. The first CD supplies 5 cuts from 1961, when he was exploring various small and big band formats, and recording the classic Greensleeves/ Naima/ Impressions. Disc 2 documents the next two years of the famous quartet with McCoy Tyner (pno), Jimmy Garrison (bs) and Elvin Jones (dms), plus Coltrane's pairings with Duke Ellington on Sentimental Mood/ Take The Coltrane and My One And Only Love with singer Johnny Hartman. The quartet format is examined further on the third disc, with the lengthy Crescent/ A Love Supreme/ Living Space representing the era of exploratory solo structures. The final, most avant-garde period (1966-67) is conveyed by a single cut (Offering), which may be enough for first-timers, but leaves Pharoah Sanders out of the picture entirely. All in all, a tidy summation of the vital Impulse years, with comprehensive notes and vintage Chuck Stewart photos. (MB)

JOHN COLTRANE Impulse GRD 120 Dear Old Stockholm ● CD $12.98

JOHN COLTRANE Impulse GRD 146 Live In Seattle ● CD $25.98
Two CD set.

JOHN COLTRANE Impulse 155 A Love Supreme ● CD $17.98
Arguably the greatest & most influential jazz LP of the 60s, felt heavily in the world of rock as well as jazz. Recorded Dec.9 '64 with the classic Quartet of 'Trane, Tyner, Garrison & Jones. a long extended suite in 4 parts - Part 1-Acknowledgement/ Part 2- Resolution/ Part 3-Pursuance/ Part 4-Psalm (GM)

JOHN COLTRANE Impulse IMPD 169 Stellar Regions ● CD $17.98
11 tracks, 61 min., essential While unreleased Coltrane from any period isn't exactly something to shake a stick at, the contents here--a complete session from February 15, 1967--is especially momentous.If you're thinking the unrestrained chaos that typified a lot of his '65-'66 work, think again: These recordings find Coltrane not only returning to the quartet format (with Rashied Ali, Alice Coltrane, and Jimmy Garrison--Pharoah Sanders is notably absent), but also returning to tighter, more focused compositions. Still fascinated by energy and sound but no longer surrendering entirely to them, Coltrane here experiments with his free discoveries (insistent, twisted sax runs, cascading piano sheets, Ali's multi-directional drumming) in a more structured context, and what emerges is some of his deepest (and best) work, poised between freedom and restraint, with a gripping, nearly spiritual energy level. Stellar Regions is remarkable not only because it suggests the beginnings of an unrealized phase in Coltrane's career, but because it suggests a post-free future for jazz that is neither fusion nor pure-sound. Awesome. (Only one of these cuts has been previously released: Offering, on the Expression album). (GDR)

JOHN COLTRANE Impulse 215 Coltrane ● CD $17.98

JOHN COLTRANE Original Jazz Classics 020 Coltrane ● CD $12.98
Coltrane's debut as a leader is an impressive one, thanks in part to the encouragement provided by Red Garland and Mal Waldron on piano, Paul Chambers on bass and drummer Albert Heath. The six tunes on this date are a nice mixture of straight-ahead blowing and advanced, even exotic horn arrangements with trumpeter Johnnie Splawn and Sahib Shihab on baritone sax. The first cut, Bakai, is an outstanding example of small group orchestration which foreshadows Coltrane's fascination with African and Islamic tonalities. His playing is a marvel of confidence and maturity on every track, and even though the recording quality is a little uneven, listening is a pleasure from beginning to end. (MB)

JOHN COLTRANE Original Jazz Classics 021 Soultrane ● CD $12.98
Top-notch Coltrane from the well documented post-Miles/ pre-Impulse segment of his career. Recorded in 1958 with Red Garland, Paul Chambers and Arthur Taylor egging him on, John plays at his creative peak on every cut. On the ballads I Want To Talk About You, Theme For Ernie his restless spirit is tempered with lyrical sensitivity of the highest order, reminding us that he was indeed a master of this particular form. The remaining three tunes are solidly uptempo, Good Bait and You Say You Care being full of vibrant expression, sometimes Parker-esque and often tending toward a tough R&B styled swing. Russian Lullaby , the last selection, takes off at breakneck speed after Garland's romantic piano intro, and it's a stunning closer with Coltrane's tenor spitting fiery sheets of sound. Clear and well-detailed sound; a bit short at 40 minutes but after the first count you'll forget all about the clock. [MB)

JOHN COLTRANE Original Jazz Classics 078 Settin' The Pace ● CD $12.98
Reissue of Prestige 7213 from 1961, containing a previously unissued session from March 26, 1958 with Trane & The Red Garland Trio - Red(p), Paul Chambers(b) & Art Taylor(d). 4 long beaufiful pieces - I See Your Face Before Me/ If There Is Someone Lovelier Than You/ Little Melonae/ Rise & Shine. (GM)

JOHN COLTRANE Original Jazz Classics 131 Lush Life ● CD $12.98
Reissue of Prestige 7188 from 1958. Odds & ends from 3 sessions make up one of Coltranes most beautiful lps, made up of blues and standards. The title tune comes from a Jan. 10, 1958 session with Donald Byrd(t) & The Red Garland Trio (Garland(p), Chambers(b) & Louis Hayes(d)) that was later released on the Believer and Last Trane lps. I Hear A Rhapsody is from the "Coltrane" session of May 31, 1957 with Trane again fronting the Garland Trio, this time with Albert Heath on drums. The most remarkable is the Aug. 16, 1957 session that takes up side 2 - Trane in a rare pianoless setting, with only Earl May (b) & Art Taylor(d) doing Trane's Slo Blues , I Love You & Like Some One In Love .

JOHN COLTRANE Original Jazz Classics 189 Traneing In With The Red Garland Trio ● CD $12.98
Reissue of Coltrane's 2nd lp, originally Prestige 7123 from 1957. Coltrane is joined by Garland(p), Paul Chambers(b) & Art Taylor(d) on 5 tunes recorded on August 23, 1957 - 2 blues - Bass Blues & Traneing In , 2 ballads - Slow Dance & You Leave Me Breathless, and a wild one with the deceptive title Soft Lights and Sweet Music.

JOHN COLTRANE Original Jazz Classics 246 Standard Coltrane ● CD $12.98
Reissue of Prestige 7243 from 1962 containing 4 beautiful unissued standards from the famed July 11, 1958 "Stardust Session", with Wilbur Hardin(t), Trane(ts), Red Garland(p), Paul Chambers(b) & Jimmy Cobb(d) - Spring Is Here/ I'll Get By/ Invitation/ Don't Take Your Love From Me . (GM)

JOHN COLTRANE Original Jazz Classics 352 Black Pearls ● CD $12.98
Reissue of Prestige 7316, recorded in May, 1958. Coltrane is aided by Donald Byrd(t), Red Garland(p), Paul Chambers(b) and Art Taylor(d) on 3 long numbers. They play modern but not yet avant guard jazz as Byrd races with the 'Trane on the title tune and especially on a full steam ahead version of Lover Come Back To Me , showering notes like so much confetti. Red Garland more than holds his own as well. He stands toe to toe with the big guys on Sweet Saphire Blues , setting a lenghty and fierce pace of invention at the beginning of the tune. (AE)

JOHN COLTRANE Original Jazz Classics 393 Dakar ● CD $12.98
Reissue of Prestige 7280 from 1957 with Pepper Adams, Mal Waldron and others on six pieces.

JOHN COLTRANE Original Jazz Classics 394 The Last Trane ● CD $12.98
Re-release of Prestige 7378, from three sessions in 1957 & 58 with Donald Byrd on trumpet and Red Garland at the piano.

JOHN COLTRANE Original Jazz Classics 415 Bahia ● CD $12.98
The standard Party line is that Coltrane didn't really hit his stride until after he formed his famous Elvin Jones/ McCoy Tyner/ Jimmy Garrison quartet in 1961. While that group was great, these 5 tunes from 2 sessions in 1958 illustrate his genius already in full bloom, providing ample evidence that there were sides to Coltrane that other sidemen brought out in him, sides he perhaps deliberately left behind. All feature bassist Paul Chambers and pianist Red Garland. Three include trumpeter/ fluegelhornist Wilbur Hardin (who also recorded great sides with Coltrane for Savoy), and Freddie Hubbard makes an (uncredited) appearance. All previously released on the Prestige twofers The Stardust Session and Bahia. (RS)

JOHN COLTRANE Original Jazz Classics 681 Bye Bye Blackbird ● CD $12.98

JOHN COLTRANE Original Jazz Classics 781 Paris Concert ● CD $12.98

JOHN COLTRANE Original Jazz Classics 6015 Jazz Showcase ● CD $15.98
8 tracks, recommended It's not easy putting together a single CD to highlight the 125 sides Trane cut for Prestige in just 2 1/2 years, but these 8 tracks, from 11/56 to 7/58 are a good stab at it, with Trane ending with the 1st great Miles Davis Quintet (rhythm section mates Red Garland, Paul Chambers & Phillie Joe Jones are heard on a number of cuts), his tenure with Thelonious Monk ( heard here with the Monk Quartet on the classic Ruby My Dear), & the beginning of the classic Miles Davis Sextet. Half the set is Trane with piano trio, including Soultrane, written by the participating pianist Tadd Dameron, who also wrote the classic Good Bait. Trane's joined on the front line with Donald Byrd (Lush Life), Paul Quinichette (Cattin'), Wilbur Hardin on flugelhorn (Stardust), & on Straight Street, trumpeter Johnny Splawn & baritone saxist Sahib Shihab. (GM)

JOHN COLTRANE Prestige 24056 The Stardust Sessions ● CD $17.98
2-LP set on one CD.

JOHN COLTRANE Rhino 71255 The Last Giant: The John Coltrane Anthology ● CD $29.98
2 CD's, 19 tracks, 2 hrs. 8 min., recommended. This is an adoring retrospective set which supplements Coltrane's few Atlantic recordings with unheard material, mostly from his formative years. The booklet is thick with praise, mythology, rare photos, and deeply researched biography. Ironically, the first few recorded rarities are not always so complimentary, though the live numbers with Coltrane as sideman to Dizzy and Johnny Hodges will be seized on with delight, as will the Bostic-influenced single led by Gay Crosse. The priceless private recordings from 1946 which start the set are interesting, one time through. Ageless 50's and early 60's sessions as a leader, or with Miles and Monk, finish up the first disc. My Favorite Things is the classic that introduces the other Atlantic label cuts of the second half. From these emerge a picture of "The Last Giant" (but what about Miles?) as a true superstar of the tenor. A major gap is evident without any of the classic Impulse quartet recordings, but McCoy Tyner and Elvin Jones are on hand for a few from the Coltrane's Sound LP. Equinox has a mysterious, open-ended quality that marked the best extended solo flights of the mid-60's. It seems strange that nothing from the Ole album is included, and that the program moves backwards to the Giant Steps session of 1959, though it is a technical peak of hard bop mastery. A live 25-minute Favorite Things is not hi-fi recording (and isn't previously unreleased, as claimed), but does substitute for the long voyages of the Impulse era. Collectors will have to own this, if only for the rare tracks and the impressive booklet. Others would do well to track down the individual Atlantic albums, all of which would be deserving of a comprehensive boxed set. (MB)

JOHN COLTRANE & JOHNNY HARTMAN Impulse 157 John Coltrane & Johnny Hartman ● CD $17.98

JOHN COLTRANE & PAUL QUINICHETTE Original Jazz Classics 460 Cattin' With Coltrane & Quinichette ● CD $12.98

JOHN COLTRANE/ ARCHIE SHEPP Impulse 543 414 New Thing At Newport ● CD $17.98

JOHN COLTRANE/ FRANK WESS Original Jazz Classics OJCCD 672 Wheelin' & Dealin' ● CD $12.98
"For those who like their saxophone soup served piping hot, here are three pretty hot pipers, with Frank Wess' flute no vichyssoise either". With an liner note intro like that, what more can I add? Despite sharp stylistic differences, Wess, John Coltrane and Paul Quinichette do work very well together on this 1957 Prestige date, often recalling the triumphs of the Very Saxy session. Quinichette's tenor is particularly distinctive, with his scooping Prez-like tone, and Mal Waldron's piano and compositions (Wheelin'/ Dealin') are an added bonus. 4 long pieces, plus two alternates. (MB)


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