Saxophone legend John Coltrane pushed the bebop idiom as far as it could go with “Giant Steps,” which was recorded on this day in 1959, in the midst of a period of huge historical significance for jazz music at large. Though it wouldn’t be released for another year (as the opening track of an acclaimed Atlantic Records LP of the same name), “Giant Steps” is now a jazz standard and a model for aspiring sax players ever since. Built around a cyclic chord pattern that has become known as Coltrane Changes, the original “Giant Steps” featured Paul Chambers on double bass, Tommy Flanagan on piano and Art Taylor on drums.
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