John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman

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John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman
John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman (album).jpg
Studio album by John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman
Released End of July 1963[1]
Recorded March 7, 1963
Studio Van Gelder Studio, Englewood Cliffs, NJ
Genre Jazz
Length 31:11
Label Impulse!
A-40
Producer Bob Thiele
John Coltrane chronology
Ballads
(1962)Ballads1962
John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman
(1963)
Impressions
(1963)Impressions1963
Johnny Hartman chronology
And I Thought About You
(1959) And I Thought About You1959
John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman
(1963) John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman1963
I Just Dropped by to Say Hello
(1963) I Just Dropped by to Say Hello1963
Professional ratings
Review scores
SourceRating
Allmusic5/5 stars[2]
The Penguin Guide to Jazz3/4 stars[3]
The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide5/5 stars[4]

John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman is a 1963 studio album featuring John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman. It was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2013.[5]

Background[edit]

Although it is often reported that Coltrane and Hartman had known each other since their days playing with Dizzy Gillespie's band in the late 1940s, the truth is that their time in the band never overlapped. Coltrane might have heard Hartman sing at a 1950 Apollo Theater performance at which they shared the stage.[6] Hartman is the only vocalist with whom the saxophonist would record as a leader. Initially when producer Bob Thiele approached Hartman with Coltrane's request that the two record together Hartman was hesitant as he did not consider himself a jazz singer and did not think he and Coltrane would complement one another musically.[7] However, Thiele encouraged Hartman to go see Coltrane perform at Birdland in New York City to see if something could be worked out. Hartman did so, and after the club closed he, Coltrane and Coltrane's pianist, McCoy Tyner, went over some songs together. On March 7, 1963, Coltrane and Hartman had decided on 10 songs for the record album, but en route to the studio they heard Nat King Cole on the radio performing "Lush Life", and Hartman immediately decided that song had to be included in their album.

Recording and music[edit]

The recording was made on March 7, 1963 at the Van Gelder Studio in Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey. Hartman once said that each song was done in only one take, except for "You Are Too Beautiful", which required two takes because Elvin Jones dropped one of his drumsticks during the first take.[7] In 2005, the raw tapes were reviewed by jazz archivist Barry Kernfeld, who documented there were actually complete alternate takes for all six songs that he considered "absolutely riveting."[8] Until clear ownership of these tapes is established between the Coltrane family and Universal Music, there are no plans for their release.

Release and reception[edit]

The album was announced on July 6, 1963 on Billboard[9] and released toward the end of the month on Impulse!, produced by Thiele. It has became a classic ballad jazz album, and the renditions of "Lush Life", "My One and Only Love", and "They Say It's Wonderful" are considered definitive.[10][11][12]

Kurt Elling's 2009 album Dedicated to You: Kurt Elling Sings the Music of Coltrane and Hartman was recorded in tribute to John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman.

Track listing[edit]

Side one
No.TitleLength
1."They Say It's Wonderful" (Irving Berlin)5:20
2."Dedicated to You" (Sammy Cahn, Saul Chaplin, Hy Zaret)5:32
3."My One and Only Love" (Guy Wood, Robert Mellin)4:55
Side two
No.TitleLength
4."Lush Life" (Billy Strayhorn)5:29
5."You Are Too Beautiful" (Richard Rodgers, Lorenz Hart)5:36
6."Autumn Serenade" (Peter DeRose, Sammy Gallop)4:19

Personnel[edit]

References[edit]