John Coltrane: Giant Steps

Track

Giant Steps

Artist

John Coltrane (tenor sax)

CD

Giant Steps (Atlantic 1311-2)

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Musicians:

John Coltrane (tenor sax), Tommy Flanagan (piano), Paul Chambers (bass), Art Taylor (drums).

Composed by John Coltrane

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Recorded: New York, May 4, 1959

Albumcovergiantsteps

Rating: 100/100 (learn more)

Jazzmen call improvisation based on underlying harmonic progressions "running the changes." Coltrane doesn't just run the changes, he dashes through, sprints past, hurdles over and vaults across them. "Giant Steps" is Coltrane's apex, the point at which all ascending lines converged. Never before had anyone played the tenor with such urgency. Yet Coltrane knew he'd reached the limits of this approach. When physicists declared light speed was an absolute, science fiction authors invented warp speed. Likewise, after "Giant Steps" Trane would go down a new track. Verily, as Genesis tells us, "There were giants in the earth in those days."

Reviewer: Alan Kurtz

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