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John Chacona

19 Dec 2018 10:36 AM | John Chacona
My ten favorite (not necessarily best) releases of the year. 

Usual disclaimers apply.  I only chose what I heard (I did not hear "Emanon" among other eminent releases). Submitted using the qualifying release date interval and the format of the NPR Poll.  I'm lazy.

IMHO, this was a strong year, and my choices were arrived at without much angst. There were 62 releases that were finalists for this list, which, I think, speaks to the strength of the scene.

Here goes:

Ten best new releases

Miles Okazaki:  Work (Complete, Volumes 1-6) (self)
Makaya McCraven:  Universal Beings (International Anthem Recording Co.)
Steve Coleman & Five Elements: Live At The Village Vanguard Vol. I (Pi Recordings)
James Brandon Lewis/Chad Taylor: Radiant Imprints (Off Records)
Andrew Cyrille: Lebroba (ECM)
Nik Bärtsch's Ronin:  Awase (ECM)
Henry Threadgill / 14 or 15 Kestra: AGG:  Dirt... And More Dirt (Pi Recordings)
Tyshawn Sorey:  Pillars (Firehouse 12)
Thiefs: Graft (Jazz & People)
Code Girl:  Mary Halvorson (Firehouse 12)

Reissues or Historical albums

Anthony Braxton:  Sextet (Parker) 1993 (Firehouse 12)
John Coltrane: Both Directions At Once: The Lost Album (Verve)
Woody Shaw: Live In Bremen 1983 (Elemental Music)

Best vocal album

William Parker: Voices Fall From The Sky (Aum Fidelity)

Best debut album

Ben LaMar Gay:  Downtown Castles Can’t Block the Sun (International Anthem Recording Co.)

Best Latin jazz CD

Román Filiú: Quartería (Sunny Side Records)

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