Nile Rodgers still remembers the first time he heard what would become his favorite album of all time: John Coltrane’s A Love Supreme. The guitarist grew up in what he describes as a “jazz household” in New York’s Greenwich Village, and one day, his stepfather came home with the deeply spiritual 1965 suite, which is now considered the saxophonist’s defining work. While playing the album start to finish, Rodgers says he had an epiphany.
“I remember hearing [opening track ‘Acknowledgement’] and that was awesome, of course. But when the composition ‘Resolution’ came on … It starts with upright bass, and then when Trane comes in, it actually almost blew me out of my seat,” the Chic leader says via Zoom. “I had never heard anything quite so dynamic and so emotional. I almost want to start crying now just remembering what it made me feel like.”
Rodgers’ high opinion of the album has never wavered. When he was asked to cast a ballot recently in a survey of hundreds of artists, writers, and industry figures to help determine Rolling Stone’s newly updated 500 Greatest Albums of All Time list, he placed A Love Supreme at Number One. You can see him reflect on the LP in the video above.