Coltrane Jazz (1960) London/Atlantic

Track Selection: Village Blues


John Coltrane (ss, ts) Wynton Kelly or McCoy Tyner (p) Paul Chambers or Steve Davis (b), Jimmy Cobb  or  Elvin Jones (d) recorded November 24 and December 2, 1959 & October 21, 1960, NYC

The first album released after Giant Steps, the tracks on Coltrane Jazz were recorded mainly in late 1959, although Village Blues was recorded almost a year later in 1960 and is very much in the stark style found on the later Coltrane’s Sound. In the earlier 1959 cuts Coltrane used the Miles Davis rhythm section – pianist Wynton Kelly, bassist Paul Chambers, and drummer Jimmy Cobb. Village Blues offers a different line up – of McCoy Tyner on piano, Elvin Jones on drums, and Steve Davis on bass; the personnel would play on Coltrane’s most influential 1960s albums. Coltrane Jazz offers a fascinating  insight into the transition to the Impulse years.

Vinyl: Atlantic 1534 UK release on London (Decca) DG mono

The Matrix:

Decca UK original pressing of a much-reissued Coltrane  title on Atlantic.

Collectors Corner

Source Ebay

Seller Description: Not noted, but VG++

I have seen this record countless times in the reissues section of record shops but this is the closest I have come to the “real thing” – not the original US Atlantic but a very fine pressing by Decca for its first UK release under license from Atlantic.

A somewhat neglected record which wrongly falls under the shadow of Giant Steps. But there is the thing. Just because one record is better than another there is no reason why you can’t have and enjoy both. The best can be the enemy of the good. It is the process of finding the best for yourself that is the sport.

4 thoughts on “Coltrane Jazz (1960) London/Atlantic

  1. I bought Giant Steps and Coltrane Jazz upon their release on the London label. Automatic purchases, no silly questions of which is the better one. Each is a must in itself. Because of “Harmonique”^my (very personal) preference goes to the latter album.

  2. Nice. I have both mono and deep groove stereo of this album, and I must say, the latter is quite a knock out for sound spread. Same for Giant Steps, but Coltrane’s Sound however has to be mono.

    • Unfortunately our London releases (crimson/silver label, Decca pressing) are almost always mono, so beggars can’t be choosers. Having both the mono and the stereo of a record seems to me a good strategy. One probably has the edge over the other, and whichever it is, luckily, you have it.

  3. Beautiful music. Excellent buy.

    Love the philosophy. “Just because one record is better than another there is no reason why you can’t have and enjoy both”.

    Life in a nutshell. Most people seem to believe only the best is good enough. Oh how they miss out.


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