31 December 2011


Thanks to my return to school and other blogging obligations I've been pretty quiet around these parts lately. Which is too bad, since I would have loved to take the time to comment on the latest jazz internet controversies.* I've still got three album reviews in the queue that I have barely started, but alas. I resolve to blog more at some point, but that's as much of a commitment as I'll make for now.

As always, I will list some of my favorite music of the year (jazz and non-jazz) below. I can never listen to anything approaching a comprehensive list of the music released in a given year, but suffice it to say these albums below made me take notice this year.

Ambrose Akinmusire - When The Heart Emerges Glistening
Gretchen Parlato - The Lost And Found
Ben Williams - State of Art
Joe Lovano Us Five - Bird Songs
Orrin Evans - Captain Black Big Band

And my favorite non-jazz of 2011:
Bon Iver - Bon Iver
Cults - Cults
Feist - Metals
Fleet Foxes - Helplessness Blues
The Roots - Undun
St. Vincent - Strange Mercy
Tune-Yards: w h o k i l l
Kurt Vile - Smoke Ring For My Halo
Wye Oak - Civilian

And one final farewell to Paul Motian, Sam Rivers, Bob Brookmeyer, Andre Hodeir, Hitch, Mad Dog, Hubert Sumlin, Pete Rugolo, Al Davis, Fred Shuttlesworth, The Big Man, Gil Scott-Heron, Harmon Killebrew, Sidney Lumet, Pinetop Perkins, and anyone else I have left out.

Here's to a happy 2012.

*Especially the jazz/Black American Music debate. I'm all for moving beyond the word "jazz," which is way too small a word to encompass all the music stuffed under its umbrella. But suffice it to say, anyone who calls himself the savior of anything (as Nicholas Payton does vis-a-vis "Archaic Pop") sets off my bullshit detectors immediately. I'm glad someone is not afraid to write candidly about the racial aspects of American music, but maybe one day the internet can handle a complex discussion like this without devolving into a pissing match within a few minutes...