Live at Birdland

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For other recordings of the same name, see Live at Birdland (disambiguation).
Live at Birdland
Live album / Studio album by John Coltrane
Released 1964,[1] CD 1996
Recorded October 8, 1963 (#1-3)
Birdland, New York City
March 6, 1963 (#6, CD only)
November 18, 1963 (#4-5)
Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs
Genre Jazz, post-bop
Length 38:59 original LP
43:35 CD reissue
Label Impulse! A-50
Producer Bob Thiele
John Coltrane chronology
Live at Birdland
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 5/5 stars [2]
The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide 4/5 stars[3]

Live at Birdland is a 1964 album by jazz musician John Coltrane. Despite its title, only the first three tracks were recorded live at the Birdland club, the rest are studio tracks. Among them, is "Alabama" a tribute to four children killed in the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing, an attack at a Birmingham, Alabama church by white supremacists. The album's original pressing accidentally included a false start - this was corrected in later copies, but restored in CD editions. The album also features a live recording of "I Want to Talk About You," a song Coltrane had recorded on his 1958 album Soultrane, this time with a famous extended cadenza, lasting over eight minutes.

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by John Coltrane except as indicated

  1. "Afro Blue" – 10:50
  2. "I Want to Talk About You" (Billy Eckstine)  – 8:11
  3. "The Promise" – 8:10
  4. "Alabama" – 5:09
  5. "Your Lady" – 6:39
Compact Disc bonus track
  1. "Vilia" – 4:36

"Vilia" is the main melodic statement to the Franz Lehár piece "Vivias", set to a swing feel and chord changes.



  1. ^ The House That Trane Built: The Story of Impulse Records, Ashley Kahn, p. 302
  2. ^ Live at Birdland at AllMusic
  3. ^ Swenson, J. (Editor) (1985). The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide. USA: Random House/Rolling Stone. p. 47. ISBN 0-394-72643-X.