Ornette Coleman Awarded the 2007 Pulitzer Prize for Music


I received a really lovely e-mail this afternoon. From it, I learned that Ornette Coleman, whose live recording Sound Grammar was one of my favorite releases from last year, has been awarded the 2007 Pulitzer Prize in Music. While I could grumble that many of his other recordings and compositions might have merited the same honor, there’s no point in that. Considering the award alongside his 1994 MacArthur Foundation grant, we can say that he has received the kind of recognition that eluded other prominent American “vernacular” musicians like Duke Ellington in their lifetimes. If you don’t have the recording, I highly suggest it as an introduction to Coleman’s music. And, from there, you should dig into his back catalogue, finding at least two recordings from each decade starting with the 1950s. It’ll be an aurally spectacular ride…