Published Works

John Coltrane

John Coltrane, published by Schirmer Books, Inc., December 1976. Translated into Japanese, 1984. Reprinted by Da Capo Press, 1993.  Third Edition published Fall, 2001.  

Here is the book that distinguished music critic Leonard Feather called a "brilliantly perceptive examination of the forces that shaped Coltrane's brief life." Illustrating the influence of African folklore and spirituality on Coltrane's work and sound, Bill Cole creates an innovative portrait of the legendary tenor saxophonist. With illustrative diagrams, a discography, and more than twenty photographs, this is an essential addition to every jazz fan's library. 

Miles Davis: The Early Years

Miles Davis: The Early Years (originally Miles Davis: A Musical Biography, published by William Morrow and Company, September 1974. Translated into Japanese, 1975. Translated into Swedish, 1976.) Reprinted by De Capo Press, 1994 

Bill Cole's study of the music of Miles Davis covers his career from his first meeting with Charlie Parker up to his experimentation with electric music in the early 1970s. Cole sheds new light not only on Miles Davis's technique, recordings, and philosophy, but on those of his fellow musicians as well: Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, Dizzy Gillespie, Clifford Brown, Bill Evans, Gerry Mulligan, and Charles Mingus, among others. Supplemented with thirteen musical transcriptions of his solos and a complete list of his recording sessions through 1972, Miles Davis: The Early Years illuminates much more than the life and work of one of jazz's most innovative musicians: It explores the very nature of African American music itself. 

Interviews 

The Earfull - Episode 1: William Shadrack Cole

Althea SullyCole

This is the debut show of the Earfull: the podcast that explores the lives of musicians through music! In this episode, William Shadrack Cole, talks about his experiences growing up in Pittsburgh during the height of the steel mills; becoming an amateur boxer at 11 years old; organizing the first sit-in in the history of Pittsburgh during the

This is the debut show of the Earfull: the podcast that explores the lives of musicians through music! In this episode, William Shadrack Cole, talks about his experiences growing up in Pittsburgh during the height of the steel mills; becoming an amateur boxer at 11 years old; organizing the first sit-in in the history of Pittsburgh during the Civil Rights Movement; his mentor, Nigerian philosopher Fela Sowande; his controversial tenure at Dartmouth College; and, of course, his life as a multi-instrumentalist. Listen on iTunes.

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