Carter on Coltrane: Detroit’s Own James Carter to Honor Jazz Legend at the DSO

Ryan Patrick Hooper

Click the audio player above to hear the full conversation. CultureShift airs weekdays 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. on 101.9 WDET-FM Detroit public radio.

On Friday night at the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, saxophonist James Carter will perform a tribute to jazz icon John Coltrane.

It’s a big hometown show for the Detroit musician, who is considered to be one of the greatest jazz artists performing today.

Even decades after his passing, Coltrane is still regarded as one of jazz music’s all-time greats.

The truth is in his playing,” Carter says. “(Coltrane) is somebody that came up in the modern jazz ‘bebop’ era. Of course, various vices were prevalent at that particular time—most notably heroin. (Coltrane) had a ‘spiritual awakening’ in 1957 and basically quit cold turkey. Another ten years of output happened.”

For Carter, the song “Pursuance” from Coltrane’s album, A Love Supreme, always stands out.

There’s that sense of urgency you hear in (Coltrane’s) playing,” adds Carter. “He was a paradigm-shifter.”

Carter stopped by WDET to perform a classic Coltrane track—“Naima.”

Everybody has a Naima in they life,” says Carter. “Somebody that provides that balance for you.”

More info and tickets are available, here

Click on the audio player above to hear saxophonist James Carter discuss the legacy of one of jazz music’s all-time legends, John Coltrane. 

Image credit: Leni Sinclair

Aired on: CultureShift
About the Author

Ryan Patrick Hooper

Host, CultureShift

Ryan Patrick Hooper has worked as an arts and culture journalist in Detroit for over a decade.   Follow @hoopingtonpost

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