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2014 proved to be another fruitful year for jazz. The artists on this list represent many different musical directions, but that is the wonder of jazz. It is so many things and the world would indeed be poorer if the idiom was restricted to one particular sound. These artists all have a fresh approach to the music, but, at the same time, they respect tradition. Argentinian pianists Francisco Lo Vuolo and Paula Shocron know the language of the standards and even Danish saxophonist Lars Greve's enchanting dialogues with nature has its predecessor on saxophonist Peter Brötzmann's and drummer Han Benninks Schwarzwaldfahrt (FMP, 1977).
Once again, tradition was transformed and artists collaborated across continents, and old treasures, like Ethiopian master Hailu Mergia's masterpiece Tche Belew, were (re)discovered. It was also proven that the elusive Nordic sound is still thriving, with Norwegian pianist Jan Gunnar Hoff's Fly North being a particularly convincing example of the genre.
I love jazz because of its ability to evoke such tremendous emotion... primarily joy!
I was first exposed to jazz by my grandparents.
The first jazz record I bought was Jim Beard's Song of the Sun or maybe Steely Dan's Aja.
My advice to new listeners: remain varied in your listening habits, and of course keep listening, keep listening, keep listening!
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