2016 Notes and Tones

After listening to what is now close to 500 recordings with a 2016 release date, I feel like I’ve discovered some themes. Some of this is the elusive zeitgeist, what is on the minds of musical artists; some is longer term trends having to do with technology and pop culture; some may just be coincidence. … Continue reading 2016 Notes and Tones


Best Jazz Albums 2015

//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ss&ref=ss_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=thbicibl-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=B00THQVWQ4&asins=B00THQVWQ4&linkId=SMLD5VA73MBEBPYV&show_border=true&link_opens_in_new_window=true This list is built around the ballot I sent to Francis Davis for his 10th Jazz Critic’s Poll, which (UPDATE) is posted at NPR. As someone who grew up reading and admiring (and learning a good deal about thinking and writing from) Davis’ criticism, I’m always thrilled to be a part of this. There’s … Continue reading Best Jazz Albums 2015

Best Pop Albums 2014

This is the least rationalized, most personal list I come up with. There’s plenty of music I listen to during the year that I have praise for, but my personal and professional interest in jazz, classical, experimental, improvised, etc music includes critical praise of things for how they work, not necessarily for how much un-thinking, … Continue reading Best Pop Albums 2014