Trane played the whole horn.
This is a great point .
When we look at classically trained vocalists we immediately think of " the three tenors " and the range they perform in.
Coltrane's tenor concept corresponds with the classic tenor voice range (and beyond because of the endless upper range of a saxophone. )
Tenor is the highest male singing voice. But when Coltrane played in the same range as the great tenor vocalists it's possibly considered flawed in that it didn't fit in the consensus of a tenor sax sound and apparently even though Coltrane is considered a genius by some and arguably the greatest tenor sax player ever, that consensus hasn't changed for some and possibly many.
I don't want to turn this into pro and anti Coltrane discussion. I'm focusing strictly on the range of the horn and especially how it relates to alto.
Even though we celebrate Pavarotti for hitting the dramatic " high note " the same standard is not used for Coltrane's tenor concept.
It's interesting that some on this forum have a different tenor concept.
I've heard Coltrane's tenor described as an alto concept maybe because it fit in the alto consensus.
With that in mind maybe the modern trend in tenor is a baritone concept?
Now great players like Dexter, Stitt and Johnny Griffin had a " tenor " sound that stayed mainly in the conventional range between low Bb and F3.
So the resistance to Coltrane's tenor concept is possibly due to the fact that he extended the range of the tenor sax and played a balanced concept in the " new " range.
Well one thing for sure about Coltrane when he played tenor whether you like him or not you can definitely hear him.
At least some of us can.
What's really ironic is he did all that on a tenor sax and so everything he played on tenor IS a tenor sound.