Monday, July 25, 2011


YEAR: 1963

LABEL: Impulse

TRACK LISTING: They Say It's Wonderful, Dedicated To You, My One and Only Love, Lush Life, You Are Too Beautiful, Autumn Serenade

IMPRESSIONS: When John Coltrane teamed up with Johnny Hartman to make an album, it because an instant jazz classic. The results were nothing short of sublime. The album arguable contains the definitive version of Billy Strayhorn's "LUSH LIFE" as well as "THEY SAY IT'S WONDERFUL".

MY FAVOURITE TRACKS: They Say It's Wonderful, My One and Only Love, Lush Life, Autumn Serenade

FACT SHEET: Coltrane and Hartman knew each other from their days playing in Dizzy Gillespie's band in the late 1940s. Johnny Hartman is the only vocalist with which John Coltrane would ever record as band leader. Producer Bob Thiele approached Hartman with Coltrane's request to record an album together and originally Hartman turned him down not thinking he was a real jazz singer and they would not compliment each other musically. After seeing Coltrane perform at New York's Birdland, Hartman, Coltrane and pianist McCoy Tyner went over a few songs together and chose 10 to record. On the way to the studio, they heard Nat King Cole's version of "LUSH LIFE" and Hartman insisted that song should be included as well. The immediate jazz classic that would become the album JOHN COLTRANE AND JOHNNY HARTMAN was recorded the same day at the legendary Van Gelder Studio in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey. All the songs were recorded in only one take with the exception of "YOU ARE TOO BEAUTIFUL"; it required two takes because drummer Elvin Jones dropped his drumstick during take one. Besides John Coltrane on tenor sax and Johnny Hartman on vocals, the band features McCoy Tyner on piano, Jimmy Garrison on bass and Elvin Jones on drums.


  1. Much as I admire Coltrane's musicianship I've never really warmed to him and because of that I've not listened to as much of hiswork as perhaps I should have....although his version of Favourite Things from SOUND OF MUSIC lingers in my subconcious for some reason.

  2. Yikes! I hate that song LOL! I think the reason my dislike for the song MY FAVORITETHINGS morphed into hatred is the fact that at least here in the States somebody seems to have decided that it's a Christmas song WHEN IT CERTAINLY IS NOT!!!! Therefore every freakin' year I have to hear it over and over again. I guess the line "brown paper packages tied up with string" makes it a Christmas Carol?!?!??!?!!!!?!?!?! Those wacky Yanks!

    But as far as Coltrane, I too am not much of a fan (I also have his LOVE SUPREME and BALLADS cds but that's all) but the Coltrane/Hartman cd is something special.

  3. Oh and something tells me you may be hearing the album in the near future...