While doing these lists at the end of the year isn't my cup of tea, that doesn't mean that I can't link to the "best of" posts by friends of Jazz@Rochester and others I've run into in my meanderings on the net over the past few days. I like these lists if only that it sets me to listening to some sounds I may never have been exposed to. Perhaps you'll find something you like here? And away we go . . . .
- I like what my new friend at JazzWax did. His list was Top 10 JazzWax "Replays" of 2007 in which he listed albums that he heard for the first time in 2007 and continues to play on a regular basis.
- Senior Editor John Kelman has several "best of" lists over at AllAboutJazz.com. There are also lists by editors Troy Collins, Bud Kopman, Mark Turner, Samuel Chell, and C. Michael Bailey.
- For those of you who like your jazz less constrained, a new blog (apparently Dutch) I ran across called "Free Jazz: An overview of new free jazz. A place to share ideas on freejazz, free music, modern jazz, folk jazz and avant-garde jazz", there is a top 10 list of 2007 free jazz albums.
- About.com has a Jazz page, which has a page of top 10 contemporary jazz albums. There are quite a few from the Grammy nominees here.
In my CD buying and listening this year I've been focused on the "backlist" and not so much new releases, so I don't have much to contribute. I sure did like the set of CDs released by Concord Jazz Group in conjunction with the Monterey Jazz Festival, the first set of releases mining tapes of legendary sets from that venerable festival, which celebrated its 50th anniversary this year. One of the marketers for the series sent me the set to listen to (THANKS!). Included in this first release by were performances at Monterey by Louis Armstrong (1958), Miles Davis (1963), Dizzy Gillespie (1965), Thelonious Monk (1964) and Sarah Vaughan (1971). While also documents of an era (and sometimes suffering from the fact that they were recorded more than 40 years ago, these recordings really capture the essence of live sets. Dizzy Gillespie's set is extra fun as he and his band mates banter between songs.
If I find more in the next week or so, I'll share them as well. Hope you had a great time hearing jazz in 2007—I know I did.