Voting Often

If not early enough for some editors … One of the polls I take part in an annual one for the Spanish site El Intruso, and since it covers a cross-genre range of creative music it’s one of my favorites (and also since it is made up of a pretty tiny pool of critics, my oddball choices have greater weight). The poll will be published early next month, but here’s the ballot I sent in, with brief annotations. Everything on here is highly recommended for your listening and collecting pleasure:

Musician of the year – Elliott Sharp; Aggregat, Sky Road Songs, Cut With Occam’s Razor, and the publication of Foliage speak for themselves, with distinction.

Newcomer MusicianMariel Roberts; her excellent and excitingly varied debut recording puts her in the ‘cello goddess’ club.

Group of the yearTin Hat; their disc of e.e. cummings songs was the finest release of any kind in 2012.

Newcomer group – Maya Dunietz/John Edwards/Steve Noble trio; their Cousin It is outstanding improvisational music.

Album of the year – Tin Hat; the rain is a handsome animal

Composer – Elliott Sharp

Drums – Mike Reed; two superb recordings under his leadership in 2012

BassJohn Hebert, the finest and most consistent ensemble partner I heard all year

Guitar – Shane Perlowin, of Ahleuchatistas

Piano – Kris Davis, in a way, a legacy pick, since her recent series of recordings make a far-reaching and beautiful body of work

Keyboards/synthesizer/organ – Sean Wayland; just listen to this

Saxophone – Hafezh Modirzadeh, breaking new ground with Post-Chromodal Out

Trumpet/CornetNate Wooley; seemingly on every creative recording of 2012

ClarinetBen Goldberg, great playing with Tin Hat, looking forward to his upcoming releases

TromboneJacob Garchik
Violin/Viola – Carla Khilstedt

Cello – Mariel Roberts

VibraphoneJason Adasiewicz; the Nate Wooley of the vibes

Female vocalsChristine Correa

Male Vocals – Kurt Elling, this holds true pretty much every year he puts out a record, and 1619 Broadway is one of his best.

Best live band – Henry Threadgill’s Zooid

Record LabelClean Feed, unsurpassed quality, unbelievable quantity