Coltrane (1957 album)

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John Coltrane - Coltrane.jpg
Studio album by John Coltrane
Released Late 1957
Recorded May 31, 1957
Studio Van Gelder Studio, Hackensack
Genre Hard bop
Length 41:50
Label Prestige
PRLP 7105
Producer Bob Weinstock
John Coltrane chronology
Blue Train
(1957)Blue Train1957
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Down Beat 3/5 stars[1]
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars [2]
The Penguin Guide to Jazz 3/4 stars[3]
The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide 5/5 stars[4]

Coltrane is an album by jazz musician John Coltrane, released in 1957 on Prestige Records, catalogue 7105. The recordings took place at the studio of Rudy Van Gelder in Hackensack, New Jersey, and document Coltrane's first session as a leader. It has been reissued at times under the title of First Trane.


As a result of his exposure as a member of the Miles Davis Quintet, Prestige Records owner and producer Bob Weinstock offered Coltrane a recording contract. Dated April 9, 1957, it stipulated three albums per year at $300 per album.[5] Coltrane had previously recorded as a sideman, and had co-led a session with Paul Quinichette released in 1959 as Cattin' with Coltrane and Quinichette, but never as sole bandleader.[6]

Coltrane had actually just been fired by Davis in April 1957 for drug abuse, but retreated home to Philadelphia to clean himself out.[7] He returned to New York City for mid-May sessions with Prestige, this one taking place the day after Memorial Day. By the summer, Coltrane would be recording with Thelonious Monk and playing as a member of his quartet for the rest of the year.[8]

Coltrane chose a tune by his friend Calvin Massey, in addition to three standards including the relatively obscure "Time Was". The titles to the Coltrane originals, "Chronic Blues" and "Straight Street", indicate his struggles with substance abuse and his new-found resolve after conquering his habits. Sidemen included Paul Chambers and Red Garland from the Davis band, and Philadelphia colleagues Johnnie Splawn and Albert Heath.

The album was 20-bit-remastered for compact disc by Fantasy Records in 2001.

Track listing[edit]

Side one
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. "Bakai" Calvin Massey 8:44
2. "Violets for Your Furs" Tom Adair, Matt Dennis 6:18
3. "Time Was" Gabriel Luna de la Fuente, Paz Miguel Prado, Bob Russell 7:31
Side two
No. Title Writer(s) Length
4. "Straight Street" John Coltrane 6:21
5. "While My Lady Sleeps" Gus Kahn, Bronislau Kaper 4:44
6. "Chronic Blues" John Coltrane 8:12



  1. ^ Down Beat: January 23, 1958 Vol. 25, No. 2
  2. ^ Coltrane at AllMusic
  3. ^ Cook, Richard; Morton, Brian (2008). The Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings (9th ed.). Penguin. p. 284. ISBN 978-0-141-03401-0. 
  4. ^ Swenson, J. (Editor) (1985). The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide. USA: Random House/Rolling Stone. p. 46. ISBN 0-394-72643-X. 
  5. ^ Ben Ratliff. Coltrane: The Story of A Sound. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007. ISBN 978-0-374-12606-3, p. 34
  6. ^ Lewis Porter. John Coltrane: His Life and Music. Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan Press, 1999. ISBN 0-472-10161-7, pp. 117-8.
  7. ^ Ratliff, pp. 34-35.
  8. ^ Porter, pp. 108-9.