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Sonny Rollins - Saxophone Colossus album

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Saxophone Colossus is a studio album by American jazz saxophonist Sonny Rollins. It was recorded on June 22, 1956, with producers Bob Weinstock and Rudy Van Gelder at the latter's studio in Hackensack, New Jersey. Rollins led a quartet on the album that included pianist Tommy Flanagan, bassist Doug Watkins, and drummer Max Roach. Saxophone Colossus was released later that year by Prestige Records to critical success and helped establish Rollins as a prominent jazz artist.

Sonny Rollins recorded many memorable sessions during 1954-1958, but Saxophone Colossus is arguably his finest all-around set. Joined by pianist Tommy Flanagan, bassist Doug Watkins, and drummer Max Roach, Rollins debuts and performs the definitive version of "St. Thomas," tears into the chord changes of "Mack the Knife" (here called "Moritat"), introduces "Strode Rode," is lyrical on "You Don't Know What Love Is," and constructs a solo on "Blue Seven" that practically defines his style.

Released June 22, 1956. Charli XCX Breaks Down "1999". Anne-Marie Breaks Down "FRIENDS". Ariana Grande’s break up with your girlfriend, i’m bored’ Explained. DJ Khaled, Justin Bieber, Chance The Rapper & Quavo's "No Brainer" Explained. The Secret Abuse Behind R. Kelly’s No. 1 Hit For Michael Jackson.

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Sonny Rollins: 'Saxophone Colossus' A jazz prodigy before he turned 20, Sonny Rollins ranks with John Coltrane and Coleman Hawkins as one of the great tenor saxophonists. In what is often termed his breakthrough album, 1956's Saxophone Colossus contains diverse musical elements, including a calypso, ballad, and Kurt Weill classic. MURRAY HORWITZ, American Film Institute: Sonny Rollins was a jazz prodigy who had recorded with Bud Powell and Art Blakey before he was even 20 years old. But in 1956, in his mid-20s, he recorded this album, Saxophone Colossus. And a lot of critics have called this his breakthrough record. Spellman, are they right? . SPELLMAN, National Endowment for the Arts: Oh, I definitely think this is the record in which Sonny Rollins came out as a master.


1 St. Thomas 6:45
2 You Don't Know What Love Is 6:28
3 Strode Rode 5:13
4 Moritat 10:06
5 Blue Seven 11:18

Companies, etc.

  • Phonographic Copyright (p) – Fantasy, Inc.
  • Copyright (c) – Fantasy, Inc.
  • Made By – P+O Pallas – 1490
  • Distributed By – BERNHARD MIKULSKI Schallplatten-Vertriebs-GmbH


  • Bass – Doug Watkins
  • Drums – Max Roach
  • Liner Notes – Ira Gitler
  • Photography By, Design – Hannan*
  • Piano – Tommy Flanagan
  • Recorded By – Van Gelder*
  • Supervised By – Bob Weinstock
  • Tenor Saxophone – Sonny Rollins


Recorded in New York City; June 22, 1956.

© 1987, Fantasy, Inc.
℗ 1987, Fantasy, Inc.

Made in Germany.

Jewel case, black tray, 4-page booklet.

Please note, there is a similar version of this release with a barcode. This release has none.

Barcode and Other Identifiers

  • Barcode: none
  • Label Code: LC 0313
  • Rights Society: GEMA
  • Matrix / Runout: OJCCD 291-2 P+O-1490-A 06-88

Other versions

Category Artist Title (Format) Label Category Country Year
LP 7079, PRLP 7079 Sonny Rollins Saxophone Colossus ‎(LP, Album, Mono) Prestige, Prestige LP 7079, PRLP 7079 US 1957
OJC-291, P-7079 Sonny Rollins Saxophone Colossus ‎(LP, Mono, Ltd, RE, Opa) Prestige, Prestige OJC-291, P-7079 US 2015
NOT2CD579 Sonny Rollins Saxophone Colossus ‎(CD, Album, Mono, RE + CD, Album, RE + Comp) Not Now Music NOT2CD579 UK & Europe 2015
OJCCD-291-2, P-7079 Sonny Rollins Saxophone Colossus ‎(CD, Album, RE, RM) Original Jazz Classics, Prestige OJCCD-291-2, P-7079 Italy 1987
21335 Sonny Rollins Saxophone Colossus ‎(CD, Album, RE, RM, Dig) Masterworks Singles Original Albums 21335 Europe 2014

Sonny Rollins - Saxophone Colossus album
Hard Bop
Performer: Sonny Rollins
Title: Saxophone Colossus
Category: Jazz
Country: US
Released: 1988
Rating: 4.8/5
Votes: 826