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Love Supreme: The Creation of John Coltrane's Classic Album



By: Ashley Kahn(Author)

Language: English

Genre: Biography

Publisher: Granta Books (1 Oct. 2003)

Format: pdf doc docx mobi djvu epub ibooks (*An electronic version of a printed book that can be read on a computer or handheld device designed specifically for this purpose.)

The original title of the book: Love Supreme: The Creation of John Coltrane's Classic Album

A copiously researched study of saxophone legend John Coltrane's signature album. Among the images published here for the first time are Coltrane's hand-written poem "A Love Supreme" that was printed in the original album and in-studio photographs of Coltrane and his sidemen recording "A Love Supreme" in 1964. Written with the full co-operation of the Coltrane family and featuring the voices of musicians, producers and writers of the 1960s, Kahn has also unearthed rare, unpublished interviews with Coltrane and bassist Jimmy Garrison. The book also features commentary from contemporary music stars including Carlos Santana, Bono, Phil Lesh, Patti Smith, Ravi Shankar and Steve Reich.

'Thoroughly absorbing' -- The Times'We get the man, the mission, the methodology...a well-researched, transparently written, passionately felt book’ -- TheIndependent‘A concise, highly readable and well researched biography…uncovering plenty of new facts and some amazing new photographs’ -- The Wire‘A voice that reaches out beyond the aficionados…successfully reprises the mix of recording history, musical assessments and rare illustrations’ -- Boyd Tonkin, Independent‘An enjoyable read, with great photographs. Coltrane’s followers will have to get it’ -- Guardian‘Every bit as well researched and informative as its predecessor.…[Kahn] does an excellent job’ -- Uncut‘Magnificent detail about the characters, the sessions and styles…Kahn’s writing is so good it brings scenes decades old into bright focus’ -- Nottingham Evening Post‘One of the most accessible slices of jazz history you’ll find…a fine journalistic narrative’ -- John Lewis, Time Out --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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  • By C. Nation on 29 June 2006

    Ashley Kahn has produced another fascinating book about the creation of a jazz masterpiece. It's as good as his book on the making of "Kind Of Blue" - and I thoroughly recommend them both.As in his "K.O.B." project, he leads us through his subject's life, concentrating on his musical life, but with enough personal detail to give us a flesh-and-blood, three dimentional Coltrane. As he approaches the moment when the great album was made, Kahn moves in closer and closer, giving us ever increasing detail of Coltrane's musical activities, relationships with colleagues, relationships with record industry figures and the background to his position and status .The detail to the lead-up to "A.L.S." and the making of the album is comprehensive - possibly even exhaustive - and a compelling read.Details such as the choice of the cover photograph - a mere snap by producer Bob Thiele but judged by Coltrane as the "best photo - ever" of him. The actual bromide used for the artwork is illustrated, creased and dog-eared after years of careless handling. As a photographer, I was intrigued by this.The aftermath is similarly closely observed - fascinating comment from contemporary figures and from those since who have been touched by this remarkable music.It's a shame that Kahn's book came out just prior to what may be the definitive version of the record, remastered from original, uncompressed, un-EQ'd tapes held at Abbey Road, the 'Deluxe Edition', featuring the tracks recorded with Archie Shepp and Art Davis that Coltrane acknowledged but never used and also the legendary live performance of the whole piece at the Antibes jazz festival, the only complete live version ever recorded and the last time Coltrane played the entire piece.Coltrane was evidently a man of few words. Of all the many photos of him in this book, there are only three showing him with a smile - and one of those is a fake. The shot of him shaking hands on a deal with record bosses is a typical gruesome PR number.Coltrane was a deeply serious man who wanted to leave the music to do the talking, which it does, of course. However, this book by Ashley Kahn is a most interesting and enjoyable adjunct to what comes out of your stereo system speakers.

  • By Guest on 23 November 2003

    This effort by Ashley Kahn is superb. I wasn't born when 'A Love Supreme' was released and as much John Coltrane's pinnacle LP moved me before reading this book it now moves me more (if that is possible). The LP moves many, and I feel the reason for this is the honesty of emotion displayed by Coltrane and the quartet. The book provides a background mood of the times at a general level, vietnam, civil rights movement and on personal levels of JC and the other members of the quartet. Ashley Kahn devles into each track of the LP, explaining structure, inspiration and execution. The book is interspersed with relevant quotes from a sphere of people connected to the quartet or from the world of jazz - these make for a coherent and informative journey to the creation, making and impact of one of the greatest LP's ever made. The book also includes background information sections on the Impulse! label and Rudy Van Gelder's production, providing insight and depth to the story of 'A Love Supreme'.

  • By Faruk Barabhuiya on 31 August 2011

    This book, along with Kahn's book about Kind of Blue is sublime. It gets you right in the middle of the album and what it was like to make it. You can almost hear it coming from the pages. Fantastic, highly recommended!

  • By Maggietherottweiler on 1 April 2012

    I'd already bought this book years ago, but as a special present for a friend's birthday I purchased another. Although the book was old it was in very good condition - my friend loved it.

  • By Ivan on 3 September 2014

    Good book that dispels the myth that good jazz music does not required to be worked at.

  • By Mark Warren on 29 March 2015

    Good quality and arrived on time

  • By janine on 29 January 2015


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