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Valetine's Day List: Five Jazz Songs About Love

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Below are five classic jazz songs about love. Congratulations, you've found somebody who likes you for who you are. But love doesn't last forever you know. That's why you should also read my Valentine's Day List of Jazz Songs about Lost Love and my Valentine's Day List of Depressing Jazz Songs.

1. ‘Love for Sale’ - Cannonball Adderley

Cannonball Adderley Somethin Else
Courtesy of Blue Note Records

This love song is of a salacious variety: that between a prostitute and her customers. It was written by Cole Porter for the show The New Yorkers. Cannonball Adderley and Miles Davis combine hard bop and cool jazz on their version from Cannonball’s 1958 album Somethin’ Else.

 

Download "Love For Sale" single track.

2. ‘The Star-Crossed Lovers’ - Duke Ellington

Duke Ellington Such Sweet Thunder
Courtesy of Columbia Records
Saxophonist Johnny Hodges’ dulcet tone doesn’t get any better than on this track from Duke Ellington’s 1957 album Such Sweet Thunder.

Download "The Star-Crossed Lovers" single track.

3. ‘My One and Only Love’ – John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman

John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman Jazz Album
Courtesy of Impulse! Records
With this pristine performance from the 1963 album John Coltrane and Johnny Hartman, the duo can bring tears to even the most stoic and cynical of listeners.

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Download "My One and Only Love" single track.

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4. ‘Crepuscule With Nellie’ – Thelonious Monk

Thelonious Monk Quartet John Coltrane Carnegie Hall
Courtesy of Blue Note Records
Thelonious Monk recorded this song, written for his wife Nellie, many times. One of my favorite versions is the 1957 live recording Thelonious Monk Quartet with John Coltrane – At Carnegie Hall. The performance is sweet, sentimental, and yet quirkily lighthearted.

Download "Crepuscule with Nellie" single track.

5. ‘I’m Confessin’ – Lester Young

Lester Young Complete Aladdin Recordings
Courtesy of Blue Note Records
Lester Young employs his wistful and lyrical style on this classic love song. You can hear it and many more on The Complete Aladdin Recordings of Lester Young.

Download "I'm Confessin'" single track.

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