Tenor saxophonist Pharoah Sanders was actually born Ferrell Sanders but he got his nickname from band leader Sun Ra. He came to prominence while playing with John Coltrane in 1965. After his time with Coltrane he formed a partnership with vocalist Leon Thomas which produced his most famous song “The Creator Has A Master Plan.” Here is Mr Sanders in 1989 performing on the show “Sunday Night” with David Sanborn. The song is called “Thembi.” It’s off his 1971 album and it was written for and named after his wife.
When I first heard this song I thought to myself “Every wife inspired song is beautiful.” Yipes was I wrong! It turns out “The Pina Colada Song” and “You’re Having My Baby” were wife inspired too and they made AOL Radio’s “100 Worst Songs Ever” list. I thought of several other examples that weren’t on the list too. Lesson learned: over generalizations are bad. Luckily Pharoah Sanders is good!