Coltrane fans what is your favorite live recording?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by steveharris, May 29, 2009.

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  1. major_works

    major_works This is my Custom Title

    Ramsey, NJ, USA
    Like another poster said, my "favorite" changes from time to time. I'd probably name Village Vanguard Again! as my all-time favorite (actually, one of my favorite things on that album is Pharaoh's solo on Naima). One Down, One Up gets played a lot. So does the Vanguard box.
  2. Maggie

    Maggie funky but chic

    Toronto, Canada
    Resurrecting this thread with a discographical question. When was the first time the Newport '63 material was released as a standalone album, without any additional studio tracks? There's an LP from the 60s called Selflessness that has "I Want to Talk About You" and "My Favorite Things" as well as the later and unrelated title track - and then in 1992 or whenever there was the CD that added the truncated "Impressions" and, for some reason, "Chasin' Another Train" from the Village Vanguard recordings as a bonus track.

    Now there is My Favorite Things: Coltrane at Newport from 2007, which sensibly deletes "Chasin' Another Train" (no loss to me as I have the VV box) but adds some seven minutes to "Impressions" (although not all of it; some minutes were apparently still deemed unreleasable).

    Were the three Newport '63 recordings ever released on a standalone LP, without "Chasin' Another Train" or "Selflessness"? That is to say, was the Newport '63 set ever a 'proper' vinyl album, legit or boot, or was it purely a product of the CD era?
  3. bodine

    bodine Forum Resident

    Washington DC
    Live with Miles in Stockholm in 1960 and also from the Olympia in Paris on the same tour...
  4. There's so many great ones (and many are great for different reasons...) but for today I'd have to go with "LIVE IN JAPAN".

    That set REALLY blew me away when I first heard it!
    Rev. MIke likes this.
  5. Norm Apter

    Norm Apter Well-Known Member In Memoriam

    Worcester, MA
  6. I gave the 1961 Copenhagen Concert a listen and was very disappointed by the poor sound quality. The music was fine though.

    I have given a couple of others a listen as well and was never really satisfied with the sound. Is there any good sounding stuff available from the early 60s apart from the well known Birdland and Village Vanguard material?
  7. dino77

    dino77 Forum Resident

    "Live at Birdland" and "Live at the Village Vanguard" are both wonderful.

    Surprised to see so many recommending 66-67 material. It's an acquired taste and might be shocking for a newcomer...hours of honking and screaming sounds on "Live in Japan" for example. "Olatunji" is like listening to static.
  8. wildroot indigo

    wildroot indigo Forum Resident

    According to Yasuhiro Fujioka's John Coltrane discography (Scarecrow Press, 1995), all three Newport tracks are on these LPs:

    To The Beat Of A Different Drum (Impulse IZ9346-2), with studio recordings "After The Rain" and "Dear Old Stockholm" from 4-29-63

    Coltrane At Newport (MCA Japan, VIM4632)

    The Fujioka book has been much expanded upon and updated as The John Coltrane Reference (Routledge, 2007): looks amazing but I haven't seen it. A paperback edition is due in February 2013.
  9. Lonson

    Lonson Just a Lucky So-and-so

    Of the official releases it would be perhaps Live at the Village Vanguard Again or Live in Japan (though all four discs are great, I mostly listen to the originally released two lp version).

    So so much magical music that man played live with his compadres!
  10. ashlee5

    ashlee5 Senior Member

    Neither too conservative nor too adventurous, Afro Blue Impressions on Pablo (recorded in 1963; released in 1977) is my choice as the favorite Coltrane live album.

    Fastnbulbous likes this.
  11. SammyJoe

    SammyJoe Up The Irons!

    Thanks for this wonderful topic, need to research the recommendations here.
    At the moment I dont have much Coltrane, only have the Heavyweight Champion boxset (complete Atlantic Recordings), Blue Train and Love Supreme.
    And of course I have the albums and boxsets of Miles Davis which feature Coltrane.
    But gonna check out the livestuff and other releases aswell.
  12. wildroot indigo

    wildroot indigo Forum Resident

    I love Afro Blue Impressions... Apparently the first seven tracks are from Berlin, 11-2-63, and the last two are from Stockholm, 10-22-63. That Stockholm performance of Spiritual is one of my all-time favorite live tracks, by anyone.
  13. Lloyd

    Lloyd Forum Resident

    Cleveland, OH
    I like Birdland best probably because it was one of my first Coltrane albums. As someone previously mentioned, Live in Seattle is an interesting one. The band tears it up.
  14. Norm Apter

    Norm Apter Well-Known Member In Memoriam

    Worcester, MA
    I don't have too many studio albums -- Giant Steps, Blue Trane, My Favorite Things, A Love Supreme, Kenny Burrell & John Coltrane, plus the box sets Side Steps and Fearless Leader and thus I am certainly no expert, but when I was listening to Live at Newport '63 & '65 the other day (which I've had on the shelf for a few years) I was surprised by how much more I was taken away by the live renditions of this stuff vs. the studio versions. When live and "on target" (I'm not much for the experimental stuff near the end of his career) Coltrane sounded like a totally different player than what comes across on the studio albums. He really lets go in a ferocious way. Thats why I dug this thread out of obscurity. I feel like I've otherwise been missing a huge piece of the Coltrane puzzle by paying insufficient attention to his live recordings over the years. They're quite a different beast from the studio stuff which sounds positively restrained when making a comparison. He represents one of the biggest gaps in this regard, I believe.
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  15. funknik

    funknik He who feels it.

    Gorham, ME, USA
    My favorite individual Coltrane live performance is "My Favorite Things" from Stockholm November 23rd, 1961 (the 25 minute version from Disc 1 of Live Train: The European Tours) . . . Eric Dolphy's flute work is amazing! I have a different take from run of shows on the Coltranology Volume 1 LP that is nearly as good.

    As far as a definitive live statement, though, I would go with the Complete Village Vanguard box.
  16. Sneaky Pete

    Sneaky Pete Senior Member

    Live at the Vanguard for me too.
  17. fredhammersmith

    fredhammersmith Forum Resident

    Montreal, Quebec
    Just saw The Village Vanguard Master Takes on Murfie for 5$ and bought it
    To my surprise, I realized then that i do not own any Village Vanguard material on CD (I have it on vinyl)
    Too bad it is a Labson remaster. Did they redo this one for the recent boxsets?
  18. fredhammersmith

    fredhammersmith Forum Resident

    Montreal, Quebec
    Actually, the SQ is pretty good on The Master Takes (Village Vanguard). I wrote way too fast about the Labson remaster.
    seaisletim likes this.
  19. Fastnbulbous

    Fastnbulbous Doubleplus Ungood

    Washington DC USA
    Trane's work with Monk remains at the top of my list, especially the Five Spot recordings. His solo on "Nutty" just floors me every time.

    The playing is clear and bold throughout, but when he lets 'er rip at the 3:10 mark you can hear sheets of sound in the distance.
  20. dennis the menace

    dennis the menace Forum Veteran

  21. Gregster

    Gregster Forum Resident


    I'd lean towards Live in Birdland too, since it offers relaxing solos from McCoy, & even a few from Eric Dolphy. Coltrane is still flying all around the place, but he's joined by some solid grounding too !


  22. Probably the Vanguard box for me although Live at Birdland is a great way into his live work. I don't remember being overly fond of Live In Japan but I haven't heard it for years so I'm an unreliable witness there. Everyone should have Monk and Coltrane at Carnegie Hall if they have any pretension towards a liking for great music, jazz fan or not. His live version of A Love Supreme from France should be heard too.
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