The dynamic fifteen-year saga of the enduringly popular jazz record label guided by legendary saxophonist John Coltrane.Following the path of its star musician John Coltrane, Impulse Records cut a creative swath through the 1960s and 1970s with the politically charged avant-garde jazz that defined the label's musical and spiritual identity. The House That Trane Built tells the story of the label, balancing tales of individual passion, artistic vision, and commercial motivation. Weaving together research, dynamic album covers, session photographs, and nearly one hundred interviews with executives, journalists, producers, and musicians from Ray Charles and Alice Coltrane to Quincy Jones, Pharoah Sanders, McCoy Tyner, and others--this is the riveting tale of an era-shaping jazz label in the age of rock. The thirty-eight Album Profiles--a veritable book within a book--offer a consumer's guide to the best and most timeless titles on Impulse. 120 illustrations
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Ashley Kahn is an award-winning journalist and radio essayist and the author of A Love Supreme: The Story of John Coltrane’s Signature Album and A Kind of Blue: The Making of the Miles Davis Masterpiece. He lives in Fort Lee, New Jersey.From Publishers Weekly:
Starred Review. Noted jazz writer Kahn follows up his in-depth account of the making of jazz legend John Coltrane's most famous album, A Love Supreme, with a history of the record label Coltrane ushered into jazz history. Always a corporate entity (though it changed hands several times between its inception in 1961 and the present), Impulse! was founded by legendary jazz producer Creed Taylor as an imprint of ABC-Paramount records. During Taylor's short stint as label head (before being recruited to overhaul Verve Records), he signed Impulse!'s first exclusive artist, Coltrane, who, through his endless musical questing, recommendations of other artists and status as the label's bestseller, would define Impulse!'s sound and proclivity toward the avant-garde. Taylor's successor, Bob Thiele, was the major driving force at Impulse!, however, supporting Coltrane through his prolific, often confounding musical experiments and producing records by such other influential artists as Archie Shepp, McCoy Tyner and Pharoah Sanders. Kahn mingles engaging stories of corporate politics with insider accounts of music-making and anecdotal takes on particular albums. His history of Impulse! is also the story of the genesis of an American art form and the evolution of the record industry through the tumultuous 1960s—and will compel readers to seek out this label's masterful albums. Photos. (May)
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