“My Favorite Things”

How did experimental saxophonist John Coltrane take a popular song from musical theater and transform it into a work of jazz transcendence that would go on to be a radio hit? More importantly, why did he even try?

On this episode of Let’s Face The Music, we trace the origins of ‘My Favorite Things’ from The Sound Of Music on Broadway to a New York City jazz club then back to The Sound Of Music on the silver screen. Taking us on this journey are pianist Michael Feinstein, Dame Julie Andrews, and Nashville saxophonist Bruce Ervin.

Sources:
Ingrid Monson ‘Doubleness and Jazz Improvisation: Irony, Parody, and Ethnomusicology,’ 1994
Scott Anderson ‘My Favorite Things,’ 1996
Lewis Porter John Coltrane, 1998
Blair Jackson, ‘Classic Tracks,’ 1999
Caryl Flinn The Sound of Music BFI Film Classics, 2015
Tom Santopietro The Sound Of Music Story, 2015
Library of Congress Magazine, May/June 2018

audio:
‘Getting To Know You,’ Marni Nixon, The King & I, 1956
‘My Favorite Things’ Percy Faith, 1959
‘My Favorite Things’ Mary Martin, 1959
Julie Andrews The Garry Moore Show, 1960
‘My Favorite Things’ John Coltrane, 1960
‘Giant Steps,’ John Coltrane, 1960
‘Naima,’ John Coltrane, 1960
‘Tonight, Marni Nixon, West Side Story, 1961
Julie Andrews and Carol Burnett, Julie and Carol at Carnegie Hall, 1962
‘My Favorite Things’ Jack Jones, 1964
‘Show Me,’ Audrey Hepburn / Marni Nixon 1964
‘Exit Music’ My Fair Lady, 1964
‘Grand Waltz’ and ‘My Favorite Things’ The Sound Of Music, 1965

Oscar Hammerstein interview with Tony Thomas, 1960
Julie Andrews The Dick Cavett Show, 1971
Julie Andrews Michael Parkinson 1974
Michael Feinstein Library Of Congress, 2014
Julie Andrews Home Work, 2019

Theme Music:
‘Let’s Face The Music And Dance,’ Ella Fitzgerald, 1958
‘Let’s Face The Music And Dance,’ Nelson Riddle, 1966

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