Celebrate! today is JC's Birthday.

I always start w/ Giant Steps.
Celebrate indeed! The full significance of that record is not always appreciated. The tune "Giant Steps", and a jazz player's ability to convincingly play over it's harmonic changes, is still one of the main litmus tests for credibility as a modern jazz improviser on any instrument. That tune literally and singlehandedly changed the face and direction of jazz. Amazing!
There is an interesting story about the recording of Giant Steps. Coltrane gave out the music ahead of time to the musicians since he knew it was a difficult tune to improvise over. The pianist didn't practise. When listening to the recording you can hear the pianist having problems and eventually gives up and Trane takes over. I am not laughing because as Frogman states above, they are very difficult changes.
and "A Love Supreme" is one of "My Favorite Things" :)
a giant step as well for many rock and roll fans into jazz was J.Coltrane's wonderful spiritual style, which was (and remains) so fresh and truly "modern" as well as
And the next thing you know, you're listening to Monk, Miles, Parker, etc. along
with your Cream and Hendrix albums.

Coltrane "Blue Trane".

Enjoy the music.
French Fries, very well put. Different self artistic interpretations in just twelve notes, yet so different. Music is the truest art form. And all good :)
Yes, I would agree "Giant Steps" is usually the place to start, followed by "Blue Trane" and "Love Supreme". Harder to choose after that. COltrane and Johnny Hartman is always fun, and Village Vanguard Sessions has many more esoteric but nicely recorded treats.
Jetrexpro, I saw Trane live, and McCoy Tyner, and Elvin Jones both gave up on Trane, and stayed with each other. Trane went on one of his "excursions" as he was prone to do live. Although me, Tyner, and Elvin Jones had no idea where Trane was going, the professional musicians I was seated at the table with knew everything; they even explained it to me, but I still didn't understand.
I have many of his recordings and probably listen to him more than any other artist. Happy Birthday Trane!
"Giant Steps" and "Blue Trane" are so different yet I love them both.The Coltrane- Lee Morgan pairing on "Blue Trane" was special and I wish they had done more recordings together.I loved a lot of the Trane and Red Garland quartet/ quintet sessions on Prestige.
Trane's importance to Miles can not be overstated when they were together. Think about it next time you listen to any recording they made together; while the record just said "Miles Davis", as opposed to Trane and Miles, if you took Trane out of the tune, what would you have?
I like the Miles tracks with both Coltrane and Cannonball Adderley. I thought they were an interesting mix of styles.
If Trane were removed you'd still have the immense talent of Miles. Make no mistake I love and admire both of these extraordinary musicians. Miles did just fine pre and post Trane. They like all great artists had their own approach and interpretation. They were suberb together as well as separately.
Charles1dad, I concede.
In case anyone wonders where it all began. Do I hear a bird?
A very young Coltrane in the 1940s heavily influenced by an omnipresent astonishing genius named Charlie Parker is expected. Like all great musicians John found his voice.
Frogman, I know "Bird", and that certainly sounds like "Bird" to me.
Thanks for the heads up. Also I agree that the albums mentioned are all great. However, I wish someone had put a stop sign out before I got to "Interstellar Space."
I like his 'Ole'
"meditations" is a great album; takes a little more patience perhaps. but i was
able to get into it - really into it- right away for some reason.
In the past I would study with "Black Pearls" playing at a low level in the background. It always put me at ease. When friends who are not familiar with JC ask for a suggestion on where to start I would always play the song "My Favorite Things" on vinyl through vacuum tubes. If that kept their interest the next album would be "A Love Supreme." I do this because that is how JC was introduced to me years ago. I went on a mission buying his ballads and picking the brains of other JC fans who would share their insight on their favorite albums and songs.

I saw Coltrane perform "My Favorite Things" with the same group you have on that record. To say it was an unforgettable night is an understatement.

Enjoy the music.
Listening to India as I type this. Going through the '61 Village Vanguard recordings right now.
The '61 Village Vanguard box is outstanding! Nice choice Donjr.