Thursday, February 3, 2011

A Black History Month KV Special Edition: John Coltrane and Edward Strickland on Coltrane

Edward Strickland is famous in Knickerbocker Village history. He lived at 10 Monroe Street. Here's another posting about Strickland
below is an excerpt from an article Strickland wrote about Coltrane in the Atlantic in 1987
What Coltrane Wanted
The legendary saxophonist forsook lyricism for the quest for ecstasy
by Edward Strickland
JOHN COLTRANE died twenty years ago, on July 17, 1967, at the age of forty. In the years since, his influence has only grown, and the stellar avant-garde saxophonist has become a jazz legend of a stature shared only by Louis Armstrong and Charlie Parker. As an instrumentalist Coltrane was technically and imaginatively equal to both; as a composer he was superior, although he has not received the recognition he deserves for this aspect of his work. In composition he excelled in an astonishing number of forms--blues, ballads, spirituals, rhapsodies, elegies, suites, and free-form and cross-cultural works.
The closest contemporary analogy to Coltrane's relentless search for possibilities was the Beatles' redefinition of rock from one album to the next. Yet the distance they traveled from conventional hard rock through sitars and Baroque obligatos to Sergeant Pepper psychedelia and the musical shards of Abbey Road seems short by comparison with Coltrane's journey from hard-bop saxist to daring harmonic and modal improviser to dying prophet speaking in tongues.
from Strickland's 1998 obituary
Bay State Banner
Edward Strickland, 68, educator, artist, writer
Edward Strickland, professor of the psychology of visual arts, a friend to artists, and himself an artist and writer, died in the early morning of Sept. 16 at Deaconess Hospital. He succumbed to respiratory failure due to lung cancer. He was 68.
Throughout his life, in his painting, as an arts administrator and critic, and as a individual, Dr. Strickland sided with those who were struggling to achieve equity in society. He was generous with his time on behalf of such efforts, even though it took him away from his studio where he took an intense pleasure in immersing himself in the …
A woman stands among a smother of foliage, and the leaves around her stir, responsive to her voice. "It's as though she's singing a linden tree into existence," says Edward Strickland, the painter of the scene.
Strickland, through December, is presenting a 40-year retrospective of paintings and drawings in the handsome AAMARP Galleries on the fourth floor of the Ruggles Building of Northeastern University, at 11 Leon St. The retrospective represents the broad scope of his interests built on the dual foundations of psychology and the visual arts. An associate professor of psychology at the University of Massachusetts at Boston and former chair of the black studies department, …


Anonymous said...

The black painter Edward Strickland did not write "What Coltrane Wanted." I did. I am also the author of, among other things, "Minimalism: Origins" and "American Composers" (q.v.).

Anonymous said...

I am the Edward Strickland who wrote "What Coltrane Wanted," as well as, among other things, the books "American Composers" and "Minimalism: Origins." Please correct.