The University of Iowa
Swing University: John Coltrane and the 1960s
Online Event

John Coltrane and the 1960s

Part of United We Swing: Jazz and American History

Presented by
Free admission – donations appreciated
Wednesday, April 21, 2021, 7:00 pm

The musical and spiritual journey of John Coltrane, expressed through his relentless pursuit in music, would inspire generations upon generations of artists to devote themselves completely to their craft. We explore the nature of his genius, and see what his music represented in a quest for enlightenment and truth.

Saxophonist and composer Ted Nash, a member of the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra directed by Wynton Marsalis, will be a guest for this lecture.

Part of the United We Swing: Jazz and American History series presented by Jazz at Lincoln Center.

You can listen through the music Seton featured for his discussion; simply click on a title in Seton's notes below!

The Musical Journey of John Coltrane

In our class with Ted Nash, we explored the rise of John Coltrane’s music, sound, and spiritual journey. We looked at earlier moments in his career (“Well You Needn’t”) playing with Miles Davis, and identified his playing as firmly (and wonderfully) in the hard bop realm of tenor playing. But his playing continued to stretch out, exploding into a new level of virtuosity and harmonic sophistication (“Giant Steps”), before moving into an almost undefinable style of Jazz as he forged the classic John Coltrane Quartet (“Out of This World”). His playing never stopped evolving, growing, and shifting, and his playing would continue to change until his passing in 1967.

Music from Class

  • You Say You Care” – John Coltrane, Soultrane (recorded and released 1958)
  • Well You Needn’t” – Miles Davis Quintet, Steamin’ (recorded 1956, released 1961)
  • Giant Steps” – John Coltrane, Giant Steps (recorded 1959, released 1960)
  • So What” – Miles Davis Quintet, The Final Tour: The Bootleg Series (live in 1960)
  • Satellite” – John Coltrane Quartet, Coltrane’s Sound (recorded 1960, released 1964)
  • Out of This World” – John Coltrane Quartet, Coltrane (recorded and released 1962)
  • My One and Only Love” – John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman, John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman (recorded and released 1963)

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact Paris Young in advance at (319) 467-4849 or at