Here is my top dozen for 2013 (with a feminine bent and in alphabetical order). Women remain unjustly underrepresented as instrumentalists in jazz. Hopefully these superb records will help improve that disparity by introducing listeners to these outstandingly creative artists and their stimulating work.
The first jazz show I ever attended was the Herbie Hancock Sextet, when I was 15. I had just left the Julliard Preparatory Division, having recently heard Jimi Hendrix for the first time. I was in search of new musical horizons and its been a fascinating journey from that point onward.