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Rashied Ali: Sound Judgement

Rashied Ali

John Coltrane knew a thing or two about drummers. During his apprenticeship with Miles Davis, he played with Philly Joe Jones, who surely whetted his appetite for percussive petulance-so much so, that when it came time for Coltrane to form his own group, the saxophonist one-upped his former boss and hired Elvin Jones, maybe the only drummer of the era who could out-ass-kick Philly Joe. When Elvin couldn’t make it, another fire-breather, Roy Haynes, took his place. But Elvin usually made it. He stayed with Trane until the saxophonist needed something else from a drummer. When that time came, Coltrane turned to his fellow Philadelphian-turned-New Yorker, Rashied Ali.

Ali gave him that “something else.”

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