Bakai

  • songfacts ®
  • This was on the first album Coltrane recorded under his own name. He had been a sideman for other musicians before.
  • The album was originally titled The First Train, but it can now be purchased as Coltrane.
  • Written by a friend, trumpeter and one-time roommate of Coltrane's named Calvin Massey.
  • Bakai means "cry" in Arabic.
  • The title was used in memory of Emmett Till, a 14-year-old black boy who was killed by older white men in the American South in 1955.
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