A Guide to the Early Music of John Coltrane on Prestige Records 

Source: Bandcamp Daily.

John Coltrane’s earliest records as a bandleader for the New York-based independent label Prestige are interesting problems. They’re not particularly loved, and they’re also far better than most jazz made by most people—in any period. They were produced with a certain cynicism, yet the ways in which they transcend their own type—the quick and cheap “blowing-session” record—generally come down to Coltrane’s own probity and introverted intensity. They include tons of repetition, tons of licks and stepping stones, and the musical equivalent of predetermined parking spaces: sometimes more than you may know what to do with. And so they may be secondary, but they’re not slight. They’re instructive and dignified and often more personal, and non-acquiescent, than they seem on the surface.

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