Thelonious Monk Quartet | with John Coltrane
Live at Carnegie Hall

Blue Note Records 0946 3 35174 2 9 Tracks

Coltrane Plays Monk
by David Fujino January 2006

With the exception of "Sweet and Lovely", all the tunes on this historically significant recording are by Thelonious Monk.

Historically significant because John Coltrane is here recorded playing with Monk in 1957 at Carnegie Hall. Thereafter Coltrane would leave to develop his own music and earn a place for himself in jazz history as Monk had already done.

Track 9, "Epistrophy" — which is a regretfully incomplete version — Coltrane practically speaks in tongues as Monk hammers out grainy chords, and Ahmed Abdul-Malik contributes a vocalized bass line and Shadow Wilson's drums are dance-like.

"Crepuscule with Nellie", Track 3, is a ballad. It plays with musical consonance and dissonance and it conjures up a sweet-sad, reflective mood.

On this recorded evening, Monk sounds very modern, responsive, and very free and enthusiastic.

And Coltrane plays Monk's pieces respectfully like Monk wanted them played.

And Coltrane pours out his passions in all these Tracks.

This is what you hear on this CD.

Thelonious Monk — piano
John Coltrane — tenor saxophone
Ahmed Abdul-Malik — bass
Shadow Wilson — drums

Recorded at Carnegie Hall November 29th, 1957 • New York

We welcome your comments and feedback
David Fujino
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