A Love Supreme: Acknowledgement

A Love Supreme is a jazz album that was recorded in December 1964 and released the following month (January 1965) by John Coltrane. This is a 32 minute album consisting of four parts:

Part I: Acknowledgment

Part II: Resolution

Part III: Pursuance

Part IV: Psalm

Analysis of Part I: Acknowledgement

Part I: Acknowledgment is a seven-minute and forty-two-second piece, arranged at the beginning of the album. It opens with the sound of a gong as well as cymbals, and then instruments such as the saxophone and immediately after. The way these instruments were played at the beginning made for a strong entrance. Throughout the piece, it sounds as if the piano, cymbals, and bass act as a foundation for Coltrane’s saxophone. Coltrane played complex chords that changed throughout the piece, giving a sound of free jazz. At the end of Part I, “A Love Supreme” was chanted, followed by the artists ending their parts, leaving the bass to play solo for a short ending period, introducing the album.

An unnamed author of an essay analyzing A Love Supreme revealed that John Coltrane expressed in his notes that A Love Supreme is a poem. Expressing himself through the chords played on the saxophone, Coltrane plays in such a way that the words are represented in the music, a note representing a syllable for each word. This entire album is a complex work of art that is much more than just music, as it is seen at face value.

References

“NPR Cookie Consent and Choices.” The Story Of “A Love Supreme”: NPR, 23 Oct. 2000, choice.npr.org/index.html?origin=https://www.npr.org/2000/10/23/148148986/a-love-supreme.