Alice Coltrane: A Partial Primer

Source: River Cities’ Reader.

On August 27, we celebrated what would have been Alice Coltrane Turiyasangitananda’s 83rd birthday. Though she passed away in 2007, the spirit of her music reaches more people now than ever before thanks to a series of high-profile reissue campaigns and dissemination across the Internet. Her catalog now enjoys widespread recognition as a massive influence on music of so many genres, within and outside of the realm of jazz – from hip hop (see: the production of her grand-nephew Flying Lotus), to ambient and drone music (see: the ocean of minimalist synth producers chasing the poise and grandeur of her harp-, synth-, and organ-focused work), to modern branches of spiritual jazz (see: Kamasi Washington, especially) to experimental music writ large.