Chasin' the Trane

On the fortieth anniversary of John Coltrane’s death, and in the context of recent commemorative events in Dublin, Kevin Stevens looks at the life and work of one of the greatest of jazz innovators

Forty years ago last July, John Coltrane succumbed to liver cancer at Huntingdon Hospital in New York. Two months shy of his forty-first birthday, he died in the prime of a remarkable career as jazz instrumentalist, composer and innovator. This year, as the anniversary of his death is marked worldwide, musicians and fans are still grappling with the depth and complexity of his legacy – and still working around the huge absence created by his sudden loss at a critical point in jazz history.

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Published on 1 November 2007

Kevin Stevens is is a Dublin-based novelist and writer on history, literature, and jazz.

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