Divine Jazz and Devotion to Saint John Coltrane

Daniel Wojcik (University of Oregon)

For decades the legendary jazz saxophonist John Coltrane has been the focus of a vernacular religious movement that considers him to be an incarnated divine musician who produced sublime music that provides spiritual guidance and enlightenment. This presentation explores the religious practices inspired by Coltrane’s music as expressed in the worship services of the Saint John Coltrane African Orthodox Church in San Francisco. In this context the live performances of Coltrane's music may offer, for church members and visiting jazz devotees alike, a transformative experience and communion with the sacred.

Part of 24-01 Contested Traditions, Alternative Realms, Transformational Experiences, Tuesday, October 19, 2:15 pm–3:45 pm