Neha Patil (Editor)

Bill Cole (musician)

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Education  Wesleyan University
Genre  Jazz
Bill Cole (musician) altheasullycolecomwpcontentuploads201309996

Books  Miles Davis: A Musical Biography, John Coltrane, Law in a Business Context
Similar  Joe Daley, Cooper‑Moore, William Parker, Big Bill Bissonnette, Barry Martyn

William Shadrack Cole is an American jazz musician, professor of music, and author. Cole specializes in non-Western wind instruments, including the Ghanaian atenteben, Chinese suona, Korean hojok and piri, South Indian nagaswaram, North Indian shehnai, Tibetan trumpet, and Australian didjeridu. Cole has a Ph.D. in ethnomusicology from Wesleyan University. He has written two books, one on Miles Davis and one on John Coltrane. Cole is the founder and leader of the Untempered Ensemble.



Cole was a professor of music at Amherst College from 1972 until 1974 and at Dartmouth College from 1974 until his resignation in 1990. As of 2016, Cole is listed as a recent emeritus professor in the Department of African American Studies at Syracuse University.


Cole has performed with Ornette Coleman, Jayne Cortez, Julius Hemphill, Sam Rivers, James Blood Ulmer, and Fred Ho.

Dartmouth Review controversy

Beginning in 1983, Cole was targeted by a series of articles in The Dartmouth Review for his unconventional teaching style. After a local newspaper cited the Review articles to call Cole "incompetent", Cole sued the Review for slander. Cole also sued the Review for libel, but he later dropped that suit. The slander case was settled out of court after two years without The Review admitting guilt or providing any monetary compensation, but both the Review's and Cole's reputations were damaged. In 1988, three editors to the Dartmouth Review recorded Cole on camera and audio tape during one of his classes, eliciting a violent reaction which damaged the camera. The school charged the three with harassment and disorderly conduct, and suspended them. However, Cole was unable to continue teaching; he said, "I was totally blackballed."


Cole wrote a book on Miles Davis entitled Miles Davis: The Early Years (1974) and a book on John Coltrane entitled John Coltrane (1976).

Solo and with selected artists

  • "The First Cycle" (1980) [recorded 1975]. Bill Cole; Sam Rivers; & Warren Smith, Music from Dartmouth.
  • "Unsubmissive Blues" (1980). Bill Cole & Jayne Cortez, Bola Press.
  • "There It Is" (1982). Jayne Cortez and the Firespitters, with Bill Cole. Bola Press.
  • "Everywhere Drums" (1990). Bill Cole & Jayne Cortez, Bola Press.
  • "The Untempered Trio" (1992). unknown artists, Shadrack.
  • "Two Masters (Live at the Prism)" (2005). Bill Cole & William Parker, Boxholder Records.
  • "Double Sunrise Over Neptune" (2007). Bill Cole & William Parker, AUM Fidelity.
  • "Billy Bang/Bill Cole" (2010). Billy Bang & Bill Cole, Shadrack.
  • "As If You Knew" (2011). Bill Cole & Jayne Cortez, Bola Press.
  • "Portraits: Wind, Thunder and Love" (2014). Bill Cole & Joseph Daley, Jodamusic Records.
  • "Trayvon Martin Suite" (2015). Bill Cole & Joseph Daley, Jodamusic Records.
  • From various labels

  • "Vision ONE" [excerpts from "Seasoning the Greens"] (1997). Bill Cole's Untempered Ensemble, Arts for Art.
  • From Boxholder Records

  • "Untempered Ensemble Live in Greenfield, Massachusetts" (2000). Bill Cole's Untempered Ensemble, Boxholder Records.
  • "Bill Cole and the Untempered Ensemble, Duets and Solos, Volumes I and II" (2001).
  • "Seasoning the Greens" (2002).
  • "Proverbs for Sam" (2008).
  • "Untempered Ensemble" (2011).
  • "Politics" (2013).
  • "Sunsum" (2014).
  • References

    Bill Cole (musician) Wikipedia