Des'ree throwbacks, Coltrane and the conscience of hip-hop in this week's Lists

John Coltrane: Remembering the saint

John Coltrane: Remembering the saint

The Play List

Des’ree (I Ain’t Movin’): Because these lists are honest, as soon as I saw You Gotta Be mentioned in one of the stories I was editing this week, I had to go into my Nineties archive and I have been feel-good cheesing all week — and, naturally, also been boring the office with a much-loved throwback after hours. In other news, season three of Transparent has started and “me time” will never be the same. (MB)

Saint John Coltrane: Saxophonist John Coltrane apparently once told an interviewer he would like to be remembered as a saint.
This BBC documentary runs with that thread, stopping in at San Francisco’s St John William Coltrane Church to break bread with Archbishop Franzo King. There is an uplifting air to this piece, as it doesn’t treat Coltrane’s scag habit as a point of morbid fascination, but as a part of his journey to redemption, helping to give life to the remarkable A Love Supreme. (KS)

The Reading List

Fools and Other Stories: I’m currently exploring different modes of writing about South Africa — what with the M&G Literary Festival around the corner (wink, wink). So I picked up Njabulo Ndebele’s seminal work and so far I’m yet to find the challenge I’m looking for — but I am enjoying these elementary shorts. (MB)

Can’t Stop Won’t Stop by Jeff Chang: I often return to this “history of the hip-hop generation” just to read random paragraphs. Chang’s prose seems to collapse the boundaries between fiction and nonfiction. This allows him to present historical events that helped to shape the conscience of hip-hop with a lucidity that lends new meaning to the phrase “urban legend”. (KS)

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