The late Harold Mabern showed his reverence for John Coltrane in a set of recordings that has just been posthumously released.

Recorded in early January of 2018, Mabern Plays Coltrane is culled from the final three nights of a three-week residency for the annual year-end John Coltrane Festival at Smoke Jazz & Supper Club in New York. The recordings from that residency had also produced two earlier albums: 2018’s The Iron Man and 2019’s Mabern Plays Mabern.

Mabern Plays Coltrane features the pianist paying tribute to his idol alongside a sextet that included saxophonists Vincent Herring and Eric Alexander, trombonist Steve Davis, bassist John Webber and drummer Joe Farnsworth.

“Playing John Coltrane’s music with Harold was like tapping into the source,” says Farnsworth. “He was like the vortex, and it all flowed through him. It was intense. Having Harold on the stage, given how much he loved John Coltrane, it elevated the spirit of the music tenfold.”