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Both Men Made History

Legendary, iconic jazz saxophonist John Coltrane gave the world “A Love Supreme,” that classic, incantational piece recorded December 9, 1964, with other jazz greats McCoy Tyner, Elvin Jones and Jimmy Garrison. Mr. Coltrane’s masterful offerings also include “Naima,” “Giant Steps,” “Blue Train,” and his phenomenal and expert rendition of “My Favorite Things” (one of my all-time jazz favorites). tells us that in 1964, Mr. Coltrane wrote a letter to his listeners. He said,

“I humbly asked to be given the means and privilege to make others happy through music.”

And in 1966, he stated,

“I know that there are bad forces, forces that bring suffering to others and misery to the world. I want to be the opposite. I want to be the force which is truly for good.”

Compare Mr. Coltrane’s desire to that of one of his avid fans, Alfredo Bowman, Dr. Sebi, when he said,

“The only interest I have ever had in herbology is healing. It certainly isn’t money because the money I was making as a steam engineer I could never make with the herbs because the herbs were less popular in 1980 than now. It definitely was another interest, a greater dictate that drove me to herbology.”

Black History Month memories of two prolific history makers: John Coltrane and Dr. Sebi.

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