John Coltrane's Unreleased 'Blue World' Album Has a Canadian Connection
The 1964 album will see release next month
Published Aug 16, 2019A new album recorded by John Coltrane in 1964 will see release for the first time this year, and the effort has a Canadian connection.
Titled Blue World, the album is set to arrive September 27 through Impulse!/UMe. The eight-song set features new takes of previously released pieces such as "Naima," "Village Blues" and "Like Sonny."
The material was recorded by Coltrane and his Classic Quartet in between the saxophone icon's celebrated Crescent and A Love Supreme. Coltrane's Quartet features pianist McCoy Tyner, bassist Jimmy Garrison and drummer Elvin Jones.
The 37-minute session was originally intended to soundtrack a short film from Quebecois director Gilles Groulx, titled Le chat dans le sac (The Cat in the Bag). The 1964 drama tells the story of two lovers, and is set in Montreal. Only 10 minutes of the music included on Blue World ended up appearing in the film.
Rolling Stone points out that the liner notes for Blue World, penned by jazz scholar Ashley Kahn, explain how the jazz giant's music ended up in the film through an interview with actress Barbara Ulrich, who starred in the film.
"I met Gilles when I did the screen test for Le chat and it turned out we were both jazz fans," she tells Khan. "When we moved in together, it turned out we had many of the same albums — jazz was holiness to Gilles and he had every Coltrane album that ever came out. Coltrane to him was an absolute master."
Groulx, who knew bassist Garrison through a friend, requested to use Coltrane's music in the film and the saxophonist agreed. The director then attended the recording session at the legendary Van Gelder Studios in New Jersey.
"Gilles had a list of the music he wanted and later he told me when he gave the list to Coltrane," Ulrich recalled. "Coltrane said, 'Okay, I can do this — I can't do that, it's not mine. OK I get it, I know what you want.' Then they just started jamming and recorded for several hours. Then Rudy gave Gilles the tape and that was it. When he got back he was absolutely ecstatic. He knew exactly where he was going to use the music in the film."
1. Naima (Take 1)
2. Village Blues (Take 2)
3. Blue World
4. Village Blues (Take 1)
5. Village Blues (Take 3)
6. Like Sonny
7. Traneing In
8. Naima (Take 2)