John Coltrane and Eric Dolphy captured together in newly discovered recording
By Adam Feibel2023/06/02
Iconic saxophonists John Coltrane and Eric Dolphy are captured together in a never-before-heard recording from the summer of 1961.
Evenings at the Village Gate: John Coltrane with Eric Dolphy was recorded at the celebrated Village Gate jazz club in New York, with Coltrane performing with a short-lived quintet of Dolphy, pianist McCoy Tyner, bassist Reggie Workman, and drummer Elvin Jones.
Recently discovered at The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, the recordings on this album — made by engineer Rich Alderson as part of a test of the club’s new sound system — were seemingly lost, then found, and then disappeared again into the library’s vast sound archives.
The first track, “Impressions,” is available now:
The album consists of 80 minutes of never-before-heard music. It offers a glimpse into a powerful musical partnership that ended much too soon, as Dolphy died three years later. This is the only live recording of their legendary Village Gate performances.
In addition to some well-known Coltrane material (“My Favorite Things,” “Impressions,” and “Greensleeves”), there’s a feature for Dolphy’s bass clarinet on “When Lights Are Low” and the only known non-studio recording of Coltrane’s composition “Africa,” which includes bassist Art Davis.
In the liner notes, historian Ashley Kahn and jazz luminaries Branford Marsalis and Lakecia Benjamin offer insightful essays on the recordings.
Here’s the track listing:
My Favorite Things
When Lights Are Low
Evenings at the Village Gate: John Coltrane with Eric Dolphy is out July 14, 2023, via Impulse! Records.