It’s that time of year again! Time to discuss what our favorite albums of 2017 were. My list is in no particular order, but I did put my top album of the year at the top. Let’s get into the list.
Billy Childs- Rebirth
This album shocked me. The more I listened to it the more I liked it. After a few recent listens this album went from a middle of the pack mention to my favorite album of the year. Songs like “The Starry Night”, “Backwards Bop”, and “Stay” are the reason why, “Stay” is just a hauntingly beautiful piano intro and when the vocals come in, it stabs you in the heart.
Charles Lloyd New Quartet: Passin’ Thru
Amazing that this album consists of live recordings only. This is some top notch traditional jazz music. Only 7 tracks, but over an hour long this is sure to be an album I’ve been going back to it throughout the year.
John Pizzarelli: Sinatra and Jobim @ 50
Fantastic jazz album from the Guitarist and vocalist. You hear his authenticity and passion for this music on this record. I highly recommend this album for anyone who is even remotely interested in Sinatra or Jobim. I find his singing/ humming charming while he solos though I’m sure it will annoy others. Love the track “Agua de Beber”.
Jacopo Ferrazza Trio – Rebirth
I absolutely adored this album. I really loved the title track “Rebirth” and thought the arrangements and melodies were beautiful on this album. This was my favorite album of the year at the midway point, but to my surprise it no longer is. Time made me change my mind, but this is still a great album.
Chris Thile & Brad Mehldau – Chris Thile & Brad Mehldau
Fantastic duo record, great communication and improvisation taking place here. One of my favorite tunes is “Scarlet Town”. Great combination of Americana and Jazz. This list is no no particular order, but if I ranked all the albums this would be a top 10 top 5 for sure.
Hard hitting mix of jazz, fusion, rock, and everything in between. “For the Fallen” really sets the tone for this album and the title track “Anti-Hero” is one of my favorite tunes this year. Great music for working out to or starting the weekend.
Diego Barber- One Minute Later
I didn’t know anything about Diego Barber prior to this album, but he has my attention now. As many of you know, I’m not the biggest fan of jazz guitar, but here Diego Barber is nothing short of magnificent. Fantastic melodic development and solos that have direction and not just endless noodling. Highly recommend checking this one out. “Atlas” is a highlight for me.
Mark De Clive – Live At The Blue Whale EP
Okay, so technically an EP and not an album, but this just connected with me so strongly that I had to include it. Listen to the opening track “Evergreen” and see if you agree with me.
Nate Smith- KINFOLK: Postcards from Everywhere
While these albums are in no particular order I will say that this one was very close to being my favorite of the year so far. The compositions are beautiful, Nate Smith’s drumming is so refreshing, and the heartfelt meaning and overall concept for the album is well put together. I love “Mom: Postcards From Detroit/Floyd/Salem” and “Retold” being played back to back.
Marialy Pacheco: Duets
This album grooves so hard. The best interaction between two musicians I’ve heard all year. Nothing else to say. Go listen to it today.
Anat Cohen & Marcello Gonclaves- Outra Coisa
Love me some Anat Cohen! This album features the music of Moacir Santos and is another fantastic duo record for 2017.