Chasin' the Trane

November 1, 2020
Chasin' the Trane

He was always elusive, on and off the stand; like hismusic, he was constantly moving, incessantly changing. Just asCharlie Parker stood astride the jazz world of the late 40s and50s, so did John Coltrane in the late 50s and 60s.Trane was a giant of the saxophone and a major composer. His musicalso influenced rock and classical musicians, such as Roger McGuinnand David Amram. Yet he was more than a musician; there was amystical quality, a profound melancholy that emanated from thisquiet, self-contained man and moved listeners, some of whom knewlittle of music but heard something beyond music's boundaries fromthe sounds his saxophone created. Many even had their lives changedas a result.J. C. Thomas traces John Coltrane's life and career from hisNorth Carolina childhood through his apprenticeship under DizzyGillespie, Thelonious Monk, and Miles Davis, culminating in thesaxophonist's classic quartet that played to steadily increasingaudiences throughout America, England, and Japan.The author has drawn on the recollections of those who knewColtrane best--boyhood friends, band members like Elvin Jones,spiritual mentors like Ravi Shankar, and the women who loved him.Chasin' The Trane is the story of a man who struggled against drugaddiction, studied African and Eastern music and philosophy,admired Einstein's expanding universe and the shimmering sounds aharp makes, and left behind the enduring legacy of a mastermusician who was also a beautiful man.