Love Supreme, a piece recorded by John Coltrane, was released in the late months of 1964. It is a Jazz Album that intertwines and highlights spirituality and displays the presence of both within Coltrane’s life. Coltrane was known to be battling his addiction to drugs and alcohol. He went on a spiritual quest to help with this battle, and he reigned triumphant. Love Supreme stood as a testament to his newfound faith in God, mirroring his long journey.
Analysis of Album
Each song within the album signifies each step within the journey. One that can be interpreted multiple ways. Track one is titled “Acknowledgement”, signifying the acknowledgement of the problem or acknowledgement of a higher power. The acknowledgment of the addiction and the active wanting to reach resolution or the acknowledgment of this power and the yearning to reach spiritual equilibrium or resolution. The title of the second track is “Resolution”. It confirms this idea of spirituality. That equilibrium is reached or knowledge of the higher power is reached. However, the journey is not done, track three titled “Pursuance” could insinuate that the journey is never ending, we are constantly growing and changing, going through phases. We continue to pursue the newer knowledge and the newer forms of growth needed to better ourselves. The final track is titled “Psalm”. Psalms are sacred songs or hymns within the Bible, which can best signify the connection Coltrane made through his own music and his spiritual journey. Pslams are a combination of music and spirituality and so is this album.
A Love Supreme is an album that conveys the beauty and brings clarity to the concept of going through a journey and becoming closer with your higher self. It incorporates interdisciplinary tactics, incorporating both jazz and sacred or spiritual ideals. Coltrane described his work on this project to be a “Thank you to God”. He offers praise through the artform that he was gifted with. He incorporates riffs, improvisations, a strong bass line, lyrics, and his tenor saxophone to convey to listeners the sense of this spiritual journey and reaching a more productive lifestyle. The album overall is an inspirational piece and can be applied to any of our lives.