John Coltrane & Johnny Hartman: My One and Only Love
My One and Only Love
John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman (Impulse GRD-157)
Composed by Guy Wood & Robert Mellin.
Recorded: Englewood Cliffs, NJ, March 7, 1963
Rating: 95/100 (learn more)
Early 1963 marked a tumultuous time in the U.S., especially in Alabama. First, new Governor George Wallace seized the moral low ground, vowing: "Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever!" Then sit-ins began in Birmingham, culminating in Martin Luther King's "Letter from Birmingham Jail" and Sheriff Bull Connor siccing police dogs on demonstrators. Amidst this turbulence, Coltrane & Hartman's 5-minute ballad of "sweet surrender" became an island of sanity in a deranged sea. It was a refuge that Coltrane himself would soon abandon, but for one brief moment the stillness, "like an April breeze on the wings of spring," was a welcome respite. So it remains.
Reviewer: Alan Kurtz
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