Sun Ship

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Sun Ship
John Coltrane - Sun Ship.jpg
Studio album by
RecordedAugust 26, 1965
GenreAvant-garde jazz
ProducerBob Thiele, John Coltrane
John Coltrane chronology
Sun Ship
First Meditations
Professional ratings
Review scores
Allmusic4/5 stars[1]
The Penguin Guide to Jazz4/4 stars[2]
The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide4/5 stars[3]

Sun Ship is a posthumously released jazz album recorded on August 26, 1965, by tenor saxophonist John Coltrane. Along with First Meditations, recorded a week later, it was one of the last recording dates for Coltrane's "Classic Quartet" with McCoy Tyner, Jimmy Garrison, and Elvin Jones. Sun Ship consists of five independent tracks, unlike many of Coltrane's other works from this period (e.g. Ascension, First Meditations, Om, Meditations) that are suites or single large works.

Sun Ship was one of the only albums John Coltrane's quartet recorded without sound engineer Rudy Van Gelder. By this time, Coltrane had begun to augment his usual quartet with additional musicians for both live dates and recording sessions, such as the June 28, 1965 Ascension date, for which Coltrane employed an 11-piece ensemble. Tenor saxophonist Pharoah Sanders was playing regularly with the band by September, 1965, and both McCoy Tyner and Elvin Jones left the band in January, 1966.

Sun Ship: The Complete Session, a two-CD collection, was released in 2013.[4] On this release, "Amen" appears unaltered, and there are alternative takes of all five tracks, incomplete takes, and sections of some titles.[4]

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Sun Ship" – 6:12
  2. "Dearly Beloved" – 6:27
  3. "Amen" – 8:16
  4. "Attaining" – 11:26
  5. "Ascent" – 10:10



  1. ^ Jurek, Thom "Review". AllMusic. Retrieved May 2, 2015.
  2. ^ Cook, Richard; Morton, Brian (2008). The Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings (9th ed.). Penguin. p. 291. ISBN 978-0-141-03401-0.
  3. ^ Swenson, J., ed. (1985). The Rolling Stone Jazz Record Guide. USA: Random House/Rolling Stone. pp. 47. ISBN 0-394-72643-X.
  4. ^ a b Hale, James (February 2014) "Chasing an Illusive New Form". Down Beat. p. 84