My Favorite Things (album)

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My Favorite Things
My Favorite Things.jpg
Studio album by
ReleasedMarch 1961
RecordedOctober 21, 24, 26, 1960
GenreModal jazz
ProducerNesuhi Ertegün
John Coltrane chronology
Coltrane's Sound
My Favorite Things
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic5/5 stars [1]
The Penguin Guide to Jazz4/4 stars[2]
The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide5/5 stars[3]

My Favorite Things is the seventh studio album by jazz musician John Coltrane, released in 1961 on Atlantic Records, catalogue SD-1361. It was the first album to feature Coltrane playing soprano saxophone. An edited version of the title track became a hit single that gained popularity in 1961 on radio.[4] The record became a major commercial success. In 1998, the album received the Grammy Hall of Fame award.[5] It attained gold record status in 2018, having sold 500,000 copies.[6]


In March 1960, while on tour in Europe, Miles Davis purchased a soprano saxophone for Coltrane. With the exception of Steve Lacy's late 1950s work with the pianist Cecil Taylor, the instrument had become little used in jazz at that time.[7] Intrigued by its capabilities, Coltrane began playing it at his summer club dates.[8]

After leaving the Davis band, Coltrane, for his first regular bookings at New York's Jazz Gallery in the summer of 1960, assembled the first version of the John Coltrane Quartet. The line-up settled by autumn with McCoy Tyner on piano, Steve Davis on bass, and Elvin Jones on drums.[9] Sessions the week before Halloween at Atlantic Studios yielded the track "Village Blues" for Coltrane Jazz and the entirety of this album along with the tracks that Atlantic would later assemble into Coltrane Plays the Blues and Coltrane's Sound.


The famous track is a modal rendition of the Rodgers and Hammerstein song "My Favorite Things" from The Sound of Music. The melody is heard numerous times throughout, but instead of playing solos over the written chord changes, both Tyner and Coltrane take extended solos over vamps of the two tonic chords, E minor and E major, played in waltz time.[10] In the documentary The World According to John Coltrane, narrator Ed Wheeler remarks on the impact that this song's popularity had on Coltrane's career:

In 1960, Coltrane left Miles [Davis] and formed his own quartet to further explore modal playing, freer directions, and a growing Indian influence. They transformed "My Favorite Things", the cheerful populist song from 'The Sound of Music,' into a hypnotic eastern dervish dance. The recording was a hit and became Coltrane's most requested tune—and a bridge to broad public acceptance.

On March 3, 1998, Rhino Records reissued My Favorite Things as part of its Atlantic 50th Anniversary Jazz Gallery series. Included as bonus tracks were both sides of the "My Favorite Things" single, released as Atlantic 5012 in 1961.

Track listing[edit]

Side one
1."My Favorite Things"Oscar Hammerstein II,
Richard Rodgers
2."Ev'ry Time We Say Goodbye"Cole Porter5:39
Side two
1."Summertime"Ira Gershwin, DuBose Heyward, George Gershwin11:31
2."But Not for Me"Ira Gershwin, George Gershwin9:34
1998 reissue bonus tracks
5."My Favorite Things, Part 1" (single A-side)Rodgers and Hammerstein2:45
6."My Favorite Things, Part 2" (single B-side)Rodgers and Hammerstein3:02


Production personnel[edit]


Region Certification Certified units/Sales
United States (RIAA)[11] Gold 500,000double-dagger

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone


  1. ^ My Favorite Things at AllMusic
  2. ^ Cook, Richard; Morton, Brian (2008). The Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings (9th ed.). Penguin. p. 286. ISBN 978-0-141-03401-0.
  3. ^ Swenson, J., ed. (1985). The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide. USA: Random House/Rolling Stone. p. 47. ISBN 0-394-72643-X.
  4. ^ Ben Ratliff. Coltrane: The Story of A Sound. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2007. ISBN 978-0-374-12606-3, p. 60.
  5. ^ Grammy Hall of Fame website retrieved 7 August 2011
  6. ^ "What's News". The New York City Jazz Record. No. 202. January 2019. p. 5.
  7. ^ Porter, Lewis. John Coltrane: His Life and Music. University of Michigan Press. p. 181. ISBN 978-0472086436.
  8. ^ Miles Davis with Quincy Troupe. Miles: The Autobiography. New York: Simon and Schuster, 1989. ISBN 0-671-63504-2, pp. 223-224.
  9. ^ Lewis Porter. John Coltrane: His Life and Music. Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan Press, 1999. ISBN 0-472-10161-7, pp. 171-180.
  10. ^ Porter, pp. 182-183.
  11. ^ "American album certifications – John Coltrane – My Favorite Things". Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Album, then click SEARCH. 

External links[edit]