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  1. #1

    Looking for Contemporary Jazz albums!!

    im looking for Contemporary Jazz albums from 1980-1997! any idea of what albums to start with

  2. #2
    These may not all be exactly in the time frame you asked for but here are a few of my recommendations

    Geetee, Chi Drummer and Daddyacey can probably fill in a lot of gaps as well

    Catching the Sun – Spyro Gyro
    The Best of Return to forever - Chick Corea
    Black Market – Weather Report
    Carmel – Joe Sample
    An Evening of Magic, Live at the Hollywood Bowl – Chuck Mangione
    Two of a Kind – Bob James, Earl Klugh
    Ginseng Woman – Eric Gale
    Anything by Miles (although Bitchs Brew doesn’t do it for me)
    Night Train - Oscar Petersen - Hymn To Freedom (this is actually from the 60’s but Hymn To Freedom is timeless)
    Yellow Jackets – Yellow Jackets
    Kilimanjaro – Rippingtons
    The Dude – Quincy Jones
    Between The Sheets – Four Play
    The Bridge – Hiroshima (if you like an Asian tinge to your jazz anything they have recorded is good)
    The Power of Touch – Bobby Lyle

  3. #3
    OHH Ms.M, I am truly honored by your recommedation ,seriously. Thank you.

    @oldspice676---- To be truthfull , IMO , there was no true Jazz after the late 70's. It's all retro from there backwards. There are many reissues of earlier albums I could suggest ,but from 80-97 the pickings are very slim. I will research and get back.

  4. #4
    You're welcome Daddyacey...and I will admit "comtemporary" jazz and to some even it's old school cousin fusion is an aquired tatse but I know you can find an exception to your own rule...cause you're open minded like that and have a heck of an ear

  5. #5

  6. #6
    let me add this nice flute from Althea Rene playing 'Wishing On A Star'

    And 'In the Moment'

  7. #7
    added the wrong link for In The Moment

  8. #8
    I just wrote a detailed reply to this thread and it just went off into cyberspace.
    I'm not going to try and repeat it but I will say daddyaccey's statement that there was no true jazz after the 70's
    was the first time I can remember ever being in total disagreement with him. Maybe later I'll try to clarify.
    Ollie, I love Tia Fuller and Kenny Garrett but there have been so many other great musicians before Tia hit the scene
    it's insane. Jazz hasn't disappeared, not by a longshot. Only some of it's audience has but I don't sweat that. New listeners
    arrive every day...
    Last edited by splanky; 11-12-2011 at 08:44 AM. Reason: meant hasn't not has

  9. #9
    Might I add these artists all of whom I own something by. I'm sure I've left out quite a few but..........stream of consciousness says....

    George Howard
    Candy Dulfer
    Boney James
    Courtney Pine
    Joe Sample
    Regina Carter
    Donald Harrison
    Art Porter
    Marcus Miller
    Earl Klugh
    Chris Botti
    Any pairing of Jimmy McGriff & Hank Crawford is highly recommended.....as is Stanley Turrentine for that particular time frame.

    Since I am an old jazz head and not prone to labeling what I like , I hope this list helps you in some small way.

  10. #10
    kdubya, thank you.
    Regina Carter's reworking of the Temptation's classic Papa Was A Rolling Stone featuring Cassandra Wilson on vocals
    was pure genius. I have just about everything each of them has recorded , back to Regina's early Atlantic work and Cassandra roots in the M Base collective led by Steve Coleman. Pianist Geri Allen came out of that too and today she's one
    of the most celebrated pianist in the country. Courtney Pine, the British saxophonist who could create almost Coltrane
    levels of depth on some of his earlier recordings, check out To The Eyes Of Creation, used both Geri and Cassandra on various projects. Don't overlook:
    Steve Turre
    Stanley Jordan
    Don Byron
    Arturo Sandoval
    The Marsalis Family (yes, Wynton can be a jerk but he did release The Black Codes back in the 80's)
    Terrance Blanchard
    Roy Hargrove (two great trumpeters)
    Jeri Brown ( a Canadian singer who did an excellent duet album with the late Leon Thomas featuring a stellar rendition
    of his and Pharoah Sanders hit The Creator Has A Master Plan...
    No true jazz?...
    daddyaccey, Do yourself a favor, brother...
    Look again, man....

  11. #11
    Excuse me,

    Carla Cook, seriously underated vocalist
    Molly Johnson,another black woman Canadian
    Rene Marie
    Diane Reeves
    Nneena Freelon
    Melissa Walker
    Dizzy Gillespie's formerly secret lovechild Jeannie Bryson made some nice recordings
    Grace Kelly, not "that" one but a new rising saxophonist
    Christian Scott
    Trombone Shorty taking it back home to New Orleans and catching the ears of young and old...
    no what?...

  12. #12
    The Marsalis Family (yes, Wynton can be a jerk but he did release The Black Codes back in the 80's)
    Terrance Blanchard
    Roy Hargrove (two great trumpeters)
    Go get em Splank.............

    I was just listening to "Fathers and Sons" ( Ellis, Wynton,& Branford Marsalis & Von & Chico Freeman ) 1982. Much respect to Roy and Terrance Blanchard as well, they are sensational artists.

    I might also add Walter Beasly and Gerald Albright.......

  13. #13
    Splanky, your so right, the history is full of great music, and so many great and underrated artists.
    Jazz was still very much alive in the 80 and 90, and still is today.

  14. #14
    No kidding, Ollie...

    Even Sun Ra was still in the game in 1987 releasing this album which I have on vinyl,
    Sunrise was pure bliss and the cat was 73 years old at the time...


    Oh, and speaking of Courtney Pine, here he is with this forum's own Susaye Greene...

    Last edited by splanky; 11-12-2011 at 02:34 PM.

  15. #15
    No one mentioned Ronnie Laws

  16. #16
    I actually forgot about Ronnie Laws but I think his brother Hubert is better. He did some outstanding work with Chick Corea, Woody Shaw and Earl Klugh but his stuff was not as commercial as his little brother.

  17. #17
    Kdub there is a video floating around cyberspace somewhere with Sting fronting a contemporary jazz band with Bradford and Terrace Blanchard...a few others whose names I can't remember but they are jamming!

    Bradford Marsalis did an interestingly titled CD called Crazy People Music several years ago that's pretty good and Teri Lynne Carrington has a few things out but the tracks tend to be hit or miss unless she's simply playing...she's a kick arse drummer though.

  18. #18
    Terri Lynne is one of my heroes, M...


    She is keeps the art alive...

  19. #19
    Kdub there is a video floating around cyberspace somewhere with Sting fronting a contemporary jazz band with Bradford and Terrace Blanchard...a few others whose names I can't remember but they are jamming!

    I think I've seen it through my surfing effforts......gotta slow down on the keyboards...lol........

    Terri Lynne is one of my heroes, M...

    Great video Splank, she has become one of mine...I had no idea about this concept.......I shall purchase and review in your honor, thanks man....!!!! You talking about heavy hitters........I have been floored.........

  20. #20
    Splank knows this I'm sure but Carrington was the drummer in the Arsenio Hall band (just a bit of trivia...

  21. #21
    The Marsalis Family (yes, Wynton can be a jerk but he did release The Black Codes back in the 80's)
    LOL....I agree Splanks, he often turns me off with that snooty (must be pure) attitude of his towards Jazz but I do give him props for being a heck of a musician and he's hosted some pretty good documentaries on the subject as well.

    Musically, the entire Marsalis family is on point !

  22. #22
    Unfortunately, Ms M, Wynton got a lot of that from Stanley Crouch who mentored him when he moved to New York and Stanley himself is someone who has dismissed most developments in jazz after 1965 and virtually all other varieties of black
    popular music except the blues. None of Wynton's other musician brothers think that way, thankfully. Branford, Delfeayo
    and Jason all have stated publicly that they listen to James Brown, Funkadelic, etc. But most of Wynton's peers and friends
    in the business, like Cassandra Wilson just accept him as he is even if they don't agree with everything he believes.

    Anyway, yes, I remember Terri on Arsenio's show. He had good taste. Though he says she was eight, actually Terri
    like another female drummer, Cindy Blackman, was seven when she got her first set. Here she is as a guest...


    kdubya, you're welcome. whoever says the music is dead needs to check their own pulse!...

  23. #23
    It's funny, Duke Ellington has always been one of my musical heroes. I remember reading his biography years ago and he said something to the affect, if music sounds good, it's good music. That endeared me to him even more.

    I understand the "commercial" and even scholastic need to place music in a box but music is simply music whatever the genre. There is good music and there is bad...but it's still music whatever label you stick on it.

    Cindy Blackman.....wow.... her playing gives me chills!!!

    Imagine this, Carrington, Blackman and Sheil E all on the same stage......
    Last edited by ms_m; 11-13-2011 at 01:44 PM.

  24. #24
    ...and yes I'm partial to drummers/percussionist

    (waving) @ Chi and Drew...lol

  25. #25
    Dang, M! Teri, Sheila and Cindy all on the same stage? That could stop my heart....

    Cindy, we both know could lethal alone, hell even playing with one hand like she does here:


  26. #26
    That could stop my heart
    ...for real....I would be horse for a year...LOL

    Did you know Cindy is now married to Carlos Santana? She sometimes plays in the band too. The woman is fierce!!!!!!

  27. #27
    Speaking of Santana, I can't believe I forgot

    Caliente - Gato Barbieri (although it was released in '75)
    but you can't go wrong with anything he does!

  28. #28
    Yes, M, the story is Carlos proposed to Cindy onstage in front of a live audience right
    after she finished a drum solo, now how dang cool was that?...

  29. #29
    Super cool...I'd give it a thumbs up Splanks...LOL...

    she is a true renaissance musician, can play it all....

    First time I saw her was with Lenny Kravitz and my jaw dropped, forgot all about Kravitz.....LOL
    Last edited by ms_m; 11-13-2011 at 03:12 PM.

  30. #30
    oooo...been going though your list Splank and finding stuff on my comp I hadn't played in awhile...cool beans bro....THANKS!

    Kenny Garret's "Simply Said" takes me to a different place every time I hear it...... sometimes less, really is more.

  31. #31
    Splanks I just thought of something....A lot of times "smooth jazz" or contemporary jazz stations will play the most commercial sounding track on a CD so listeners really don't get to hear what a lot of these musicians are capable of without purchasing the entire CD.

    I'm sure you're familar with Fattburger out of San Diego. They are a perfect example....and I have to add that Humprey's is MY ALL TIME fave venue anywhere!

    Last edited by ms_m; 11-13-2011 at 04:39 PM.

  32. #32
    O.K. I did not mean to suggest that Jazz was dead after the late 70's. It's just that although I do have some Nneena Freelon and
    others that were mentioned ,(including 5 Regina Carter CD's borrowed from my lil brother who is deep into "Contemporary Jazz"), "Contemporary Jazz" after the late 70's just does not move me the same way material after 78-79 does compared to the
    Classics. (Here is where I'm gonna duck and hide for cover ,but let me explain) My father who is 80 years old praise God , was a Bopper in his teens and young adulthood. He is the reason that although I was born in 1955 I was turned on to Dizzy ,Ellington,Armstrong,Ella, Billie,Basie and Sarah in sub-counsious state. Around about 59 at the age of 5 they made scence to me in another way and MILE'S "Kind Of Blue" opened me up to Cannonball ,Coltrane,Jimmy Smith, Hammond, Shirley Scott,Montgomery Bros, Getz,Blakey,Roy Brown,Mingus,Billy Taylor,Nancy Wilson,Dinah Washington,Lester Young,Herbie Mann etc etc. That's true jazz to me. That's where I go to get off on Jazz. And in my minds eye there was Jazz (my Dads music) and there was my music ,"R&B", and as I grew older , the two eventually melded together in some sort. The Jazz got more R&B "ish", with the electrics and versions of Jazzed up R&B songs. Contemporary jazz just became "straight no chaser to straight with ice and finally straight with ice and water. I'm not taking away any credit for the talent of the current "Contemporary Jazz" artist's by any means. But personally ,I likes my Jazz like I likes my Funk. I likes my Funk and Jazz Uncut. I have taken notice of the names yall have dropped however and will check them out.

    splanky;;; I finally got a copy of that Basie album with the mushroom cloud on it and guess what one of the tracks is titled??
    Last edited by daddyacey; 11-14-2011 at 04:12 AM.

  33. #33
    You know what's interesting daddyacey, I bet many of us listen to and have many if not all of the same artist you mentioned in our collections as well. Can't speak for anyone else but it's not a matter of one moving me more than the other, or one being superior to the other, or any other comparison in between..... as Bill Summers would say....You Can Call It What You Want.... but it's all good music to me

  34. #34
    Yea, daddyaccey, ha ha ha....
    I love Basie's tune Splanky (LOL) but that's not where my moniker comes from...

    I completely understand your point too but what I'm trying to make clear is that jazz
    is like a living organism. It's constantly evolving, constantly in a state of flux as time
    itself passes. The old sayings You can't unring the bell, You can't cross the same river
    twice always have applied perfectly to jazz. At every point in it's history some players
    had issues with whatever style followed their own tradition. Louis Armstrong rejected
    the Bebop players. Swing attacked the Avant Garde. Even John Coltrane's early champions totally dismissed his later explorations. And don't forget about Miles,
    hell fusion is still having trouble getting respect as is the Soul Jazz work of Stanley Turrentine and Grover Washington Jr. I myself have written off many Smooth players only to be surprised at the musicianship of some of their work. But the idea of trying
    to set a time, a decade, a year to the end of the validity of so expressive a genre
    of music is just something I can't do...
    I'll be back later...

  35. #35
    Anything on the GRP label!

  36. #36

    Contemporary Jazz

    You can't go wrong with anything on the Tappan Zee, Nemperor, or GRP labels...or anything involving the Mizell Brothers. If you want names....howzabout FattBurger, Hiroshima, Hubert Laws ("Say It With Silence" is a MONSTER !), John Klemmer, The Crusaders, Joe Sample, Gene Harris, Sonny Criss, Tony Williams ("The Joy of Flying" particularly), Bobbi Humphrey ("Blacks and Blues"), Wilbert Longmire, Richard Tee, Jorge Dalto, pre-Deodato Kool & The Gang ("Duji" anyone ?) Ahmad Jamal, Upchurch/Tennyson, Eric Gale, Bob James, Dave Grusin, David Valentin....off the top of my head.

  37. #37
    I'm not a purist by any stretch of the word and I loved a lot of the stuff on GRP and CTI but here is where I found myself
    often agreeing with many of the older school critics that jazz got a bit distracted sometimes with the pop ambition stuff.
    Granted Stanley Turrentine's Don't Mess With Mr T was a hit as well as George Benson's Breezin album, a lot of the spirit of
    jazz, the improvisation took a backseat to crossover dreams and this was the birth of Smooth Jazz as we know it today.
    Still, it wasn't a permanent takeover which I hope my friends on and off forum, like daddyaccey, will remember, because that
    big bad hard swinging spirit of jazz is out there in a number of acts working today...

  38. #38
    Splank, I agree with you up to a point.....

    Not all smooth jazz is bad, and not all traditional jazz is good.

    Further up someone mentioned George Howard which made me smile because initially I loved his music but over a period of time it started to have a sameness to it that annoyed the heck out of me. However it didn't stop him from remaining rather popular in his genre up until the time of his death.

    I sometimes think that we (people on SDF) and people on many music forums often forget we may not be your average listener. I say that because the average listener doesn't get into the nuances of music the way we do...they either like something or they don't and commercial radio has always been about what the majority of the people like and that includes average listeners. (there ARE exceptions...there are ALWAYS exceptions)

    So what happens? Artist write and perform commercial music that will appease the masses, not simply sub groups but the majority of people who will listen and buy their music. Now that doesn't mean all commercial music is bad or good it just is...and either people will like it or not like it.

    The downfall of smooth jazz/ radio (imo) had to do with stations trying to make every slow r&b/soul song on the planet part of the genre. As a result they lost their core listeners and the ones that gravitated to the "midnight grooves" could easily find it elsewhere so why come to a smooth jazz station to listen?

    I too understand the "purist" point of view but no matter how you look at it, analyze it or talk about it , it will always come back to personal preference. I guess that's why I don't see the point in knocking one type of music for another...it seems pointless to me.

  39. #39
    M, I never said all smooth jazz was bad or all traditional jazz is good but as you say it boils down to personal preferences.
    Ands it's not so much as knocking a particular style for me as it is in making suggestions to my friends based on the aesthetic parameters they have told me they prefer most. For instance I love advant garde and free jazz. I love that
    weird crazy wild sh*t played as far out as Don Cherry, Eric Dolphy late Trane and most of his career Sun Ra ever played it.
    But if someone said to me, "oh, I just heard this pretty David Sanborn cd for the first and so and so told me you have a lot
    of jazz...Could you loan me some stuff I could listen to?" I would NEVER lend them any of that stuff just as I'd never loan or
    give a Gerald Albright (Whom I like,btw) release to a Charlie Parker fan unless asked. But again back to personal taste I'd really have to dig hard to find anything in my collection I could say was a bad recording...

  40. #40
    I understand Splanks .

    Music is placed in a certain category because it's the best way for people to have a general idea of what something is. The one problem I see with that though, a person will often miss something that they could probably enjoy because they already have a pre determined bias about a particular category. Personally, I simply like music, not ALL songs or instrumentals will appeal to me but I don't care as much about the category, the format or whatever as I care that I like the sounds I'm hearing and the feeling the sounds invoke. shrugs

  41. #41

    Got you, M. I meant to post this yesterday as an example of the best of Smooth's roots....

  42. #42
    The downfall of smooth jazz/ radio (imo) had to do with stations trying to make every slow r&b/soul song on the planet part of the genre. As a result they lost their core listeners and the ones that gravitated to the "midnight grooves" could easily find it elsewhere so why come to a smooth jazz station to listen?
    M, I never said all smooth jazz was bad or all traditional jazz is good but as you say it boils down to personal preferences.
    Ands it's not so much as knocking a particular style for me as it is in making suggestions to my friends based on the aesthetic parameters they have told me they prefer most

    Excellent examples of true music lovers who have the ability to express their feelings and opinions in a way which can be understood.

    Personally I don't care for the more improvisational Coltrane but rather the the older more traditional Coltrane. His Prestige recordings were some of the best I ever heard. At one time I was in to Eric Dolphy but he lost me over a period of time. M, I couldn't agree with you more about smooth jazz stations....ugh........

    I have a very healthy collection of jazz music and like everybody from Ellington and Basie to Stanley and Hank Crawford. Never cared much for Louie Armstrong but I recognize and his respect his talent. I am particularly fond of saxophone and organ combo's, ( bass and drums of course) some smooth jazz is beautiful but I tend to prefer original compositions over the standard rehash of singular pop or R & B tunes...in fact I find Miles Davis version of Time After Time an exception to the rule...lol.....well done Splanky, M, Daddy A.....and oh yes I see Wicked sneaked in and mentioned one of my favorite west coast players Sonny Criss......his album Warm and Sonny is classic.

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