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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant !, 16 Nov 2007
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This review is from: Jazz Icons - John Coltrane - Live In '60, '61 And '65 [2007] [DVD] (DVD)
Finally a DVD of full length Coltrane performances. Documentaries are fine but I think the best way to find out about John Coltrane is through his music. There are three performances here, two from German TV broadcasts and one from an open air concert in Belgium. They show Coltrane at different stages of his development from being part of Miles Davis's group to fronting his own "Classic Quartet". So what are the performances on this DVD like ? As they mostly involve the musicians standing still you might think that this would not be a great visual experience. This is not the case mainly thanks to some great lighting and camera work on the German 1960 broadcast and some fabulous close ups on the Belgium 1965 concert. As for the music anyone with even a passing interest in Coltrane's music will love this. The highlight is a piece called "Vigil" from the 1965 concert. Coltrane launches into a blistering, intense tenor solo rocking backwards and forwards whilst Elvin Jones tries to keep pace. This is just one of a number of highlights on this DVD. The 20 minute version of "Ny Favorite Things" (1965) or the duet with Stan Getz (1960) also spring to mind. There is so little filmed material of Coltrane available that this is a must buy for jazz lovers everywhere.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Giant steps, 30 Sep 2008
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This review is from: Jazz Icons - John Coltrane - Live In '60, '61 And '65 [2007] [DVD] (DVD)
This is the Coltrane live-performance DVD we've all been waiting for. Not only does it include the late saxophonist's famous 1961 German television appearance (in which the musicians play amidst a cool modernist steel-girder studio set), it also boasts ultra-rare footage of the Coltrane Quartet's dynamic set at a 1965 outdoor jazz festival in Belgium, a time when Trane was really pushing the avant-garde envelope. As if that weren't enough, this disc also presents a recently unearthed German TV broadcast from 1960, showing Coltrane playing with Miles Davis' rhythm section, plus guest artists Oscar Peterson and Stan Getz. The DVD is sequenced chronologically, and thus opens with Coltrane in concert with the Davis group (sans Miles). It's interesting to watch Coltrane holding himself back working within a more formal and less adventurous musical setting than the one he would soon adopt. He showcases his angular lyricism on several classic tunes included in the famous trumpeter's repertoire, playing beautifully with Davis' sidemen (Wynton Kelly, Paul Chambers and Jimmy Cobb), but one can sense his impatience to break free of the group he'd been with for five years and hook up with more forward-thinking musicians. The 1961 TV performance finds him in the company of just such a group--pianist McCoy Tyner, drummer Elvin Jones, bassist Reggie Workman and alto saxophonist/flutist Eric Dolphy--as they burn through inspired renditions of "My Favorite Things," "Every Time We Say Goodbye" and "Impressions." As the camera darts around the expressionistic set, Coltrane and his hand picked musicians lay down the new musical language that was already shaking jazz's foundations. After Dolphy left and Workman was replaced by Jimmy Garrison, Coltrane's sound ascended to an even higher level of experimentation. Tyner's natural lyricism helped balance Coltrane's abstract excursions, while Garrison somehow kept the time and Jones laid down his own fierce polyrhythmic statements. However, this particular group was nearing the end of its run by the time of the Belgium gig--Tyner and Jones left some five months later. And Coltrane would give us just two more years of incredible music before prematurely leaving the planet, which makes these remarkable, rarely seen performances even more important historically and culturally.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Three magnificent John Coltrane films(1960-65), 12 April 2008
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Jazzrook - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Jazz Icons - John Coltrane - Live In '60, '61 And '65 [2007] [DVD] (DVD)
This 95-minute DVD contains three magnificent John Coltrane performances at Dusseldorf(March 1960), Baden-Baden(December 1961) and Comblain-La-Tour(August 1965) which reveal Coltrane's remarkable musical evolution over a 5-year span.
The 1960 German TV show features Coltrane and Miles Davis's rhythm section of the time with Stan Getz and Oscar Peterson sitting in later for a memorable version of Thelonious Monk's 'Hackensack'.
The 1961 TV recording in Baden-Baden features Coltrane's group with Eric Dolphy on alto & flute performing heartfelt versions of 'My Favourite Things', 'Ev'rytime We Say Goodbye' & 'Impressions'.
The intensity and passion is raised further at the 1965 outdoors concert in Belgium with Coltrane's classic quartet at the height of its powers playing astonishingly fervent versions of 'Vigil', 'Naima' & 'My Favourite Things'. Incidentally, just a few days earlier at the Antibes Jazz Festival the Coltrane quartet recorded the only live performance of 'A Love Supreme' and rumour has it that the concert was also filmed. It would be wonderful if JAZZ ICONS managed to unearth this one day.
Meanwhile, anyone with the slightest interest in John Coltrane's music should get hold of a copy of this marvellous DVD without delay.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Impressions of my favorite things in Hackensack, 19 July 2009
This review is from: Jazz Icons - John Coltrane - Live In '60, '61 And '65 [2007] [DVD] (DVD)
If you're new to Coltrane, this DVD gives not only brilliant (and well filmed) music performances, but also an opportunity to catch Trane as he develops his musical ideas; first with members of Miles Davis 5 (sans Davis), than with two of his own groups, featuring the additional pleasure of adding Stan Getz and Oscar Peterson to the first (and most "conservative" modern jazz performance)...

Coltrane obviously worked hard in this period (from 1960 to 1965), growing in width and depth of musicality, working with other giants of jazz - the second televised performance features Eric Dolphy who complements the leader beatifuly, as does McCoy Tyner on piano and Elvin Jones on drums for last two sets... Two brilliant versions of "My Favorite Things", "Impressions", subtle interplay with Stan Getz on first session... The highlights just pile up! If you like Trane you should own this, if you want to meet Coltrane you should own it...

There's tenor and soprano sax, Dolphy adds some lovely and intelligent flute to the mix and the rhythm sections are amazing; the first group seems a bit conservative from the jazz development point of view, but they are masters in what they do...

Another Jazz Icons winner!
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5.0 out of 5 stars love this dvd, 26 Mar 2013
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This review is from: Jazz Icons - John Coltrane - Live In '60, '61 And '65 [2007] [DVD] (DVD)
excellent dvd love this dvd of john Coltrane live if you are a fan of john Coltrane this dvd is good
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5.0 out of 5 stars Historic performances, as you'd expect, 28 Dec 2012
This review is from: Jazz Icons - John Coltrane - Live In '60, '61 And '65 [2007] [DVD] (DVD)
My points:

1) The development-guised-as-variation in John Coltranes career is surely audible in this collection. However, the 1960 studio set with 'Kind of Blue' rhythm section [Kelly on piano] is far better than the next years' performance with the almost-Classic-Quartet with Eric Dolphy [on flute and alto sax.] and Reggie Workman [on bass]. Only on 'Impressions' does Dolphy get into flight, and Coltrane is up to his own standards. McCoy Tyner is not the historic himself here, yet.

2) The first set features the rhythm crew from jazz' most famous recording, 'Kind of Blue', but here the musicians play far better! Davis' point in music was audibly very different than even early Coltrane's. It is very enlightening to compare Chambers' bass solos or Cobb's playing to their performances in 'Kind of Blue'. The difference is striking and historically meaningful.

3) The appearance of Stan Getz brings together the very old [50's style West Coast cool sound] and the very new (even today). The result is very interesting as well as artistically succesful.

4) The last performance is, as one could imagine, the most lively, energetic and, in general, the strongest. Five months before the breakdown of the Classic Quartet [now aptly with Jimmy Garrison on bass] the group is on par with any recording of its [the quartet's] era (that I know of). _This_ is the Coltrane that we all know! The last number, 'My Favourite Things', builds into a rhythmic crescendo of the whole group acting as one piece, which is rather astounding! The two others, a piece utilizing the 'Vigil'-cell, as well as a version of 'Naima' from a planet of a totally new strength compared with the original, are masterpieces, too.

5) The image quality is, in a way, good, but all through the three concerts, far too dim. The musicians tend to get lost in the unlit image. However, the camerawork is masterful. The image is black-and-white throughout, unlike noted.

Summary: This is a must-have for any Coltrane fan, as well as a thing to consider for music lovers in general. In addition to the sax, some astounding piano work, as well as from bass and drums, too. Buy it and you will like it, unless you are looking for some specific artistry, other than Coltrane's.
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5.0 out of 5 stars OH. MY. WORD., 16 Sep 2010
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This review is from: Jazz Icons - John Coltrane - Live In '60, '61 And '65 [2007] [DVD] (DVD)
I am no different to the many critics, admirers, and other kinds of people, who have had to find new words to attempt to describe John William Coltrane. I am not going to bother to try because I will fail. What I will say, because it is the only thing that will come out coherently with regards to the footage on this DVD, is that, the performance of My Favourite Things in Belgium (1965), is the most astounding thing my eyes have ever seen.

I have owned this DVD for 2 years, and it is easily my most treasured.
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Jazz Icons - John Coltrane - Live In '60, '61 And '65 [2007] [DVD]
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