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Huntington Ashram Monastery / World Galaxy

Alice Coltrane

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Album Review

This remastered two-fer combines Alice Coltrane's 1969 release Huntington Ashram Monastery with World Galaxy from 1972. Originally, these LPs were released separately on Impulse. Both sets are spiritual in nature, with the first three cuts on H.A.M. combining the majestically meditative harp of Coltrane with Ron Carter on bass and Rashied Ali on drums and percussion. Coltrane switches to piano on the album’s final three cuts bringing the free jazz component into focus, especially from Ali, who is slightly subdued on this date. World Galaxy opens and closes with two compositions associated with John Coltrane: "My Favorite Things" and a section from his masterpiece "A Love Supreme." Alice Coltrane is featured on harp, piano, and organ with saxophonist Frank Lowe, bassist Reggie Workman, drummer Ben Riley, violinist Leroy Jenkins, and a full string section. The music takes time to open up, slowly building dense layers that venture into free jazz but never completely succumb to it.

Biography

Born: 27 August 1937 in Detroit, MI

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Alice Coltrane was an uncompromising pianist, composer and bandleader, who spent the majority of her life seeking spiritually in both music and her private life. Music ran in Alice Coltrane's family; her older brother was bassist Ernie Farrow, who in the '50s and '60s played in the bands of Barry Harris, Stan Getz, Terry Gibbs, and especially Yusef Lateef. Alice McLeod began studying classical music at the age of seven. She attended Detroit's Cass Technical High School with pianist Hugh Lawson and...
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Huntington Ashram Monastery / World Galaxy, Alice Coltrane
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