2003 proved to be quite a challenging year for AAJ, especially the tail end. The two server crashes in September created a mountain of recovery work and curtailed my CD listening for a good month. It took me a while to get my ears back to the music, but when I finally did, I discovered several gems that helped restore my spirits.
The following CDs were culled from the 90+ releases that were designated as publishers picks throughout the past year. These eighteen represent the finest and most exciting releases of the bunchthey're also the CDs that scored the most spins in my player.
Be sure to click the links below to read the reviews. For additional reviews, search AAJ by the CD's title. For all the publisher's picks, go here .
I love jazz because it's sophisticated, international, atmospheric yet free, cool and warm.
I was first exposed to jazz through the sultry voice and flawless swing of my mother.
I met Mark Murphy, David Linx, Kurt Elling, and Youn Sun Nah.
The best show I ever attended was Youn Sun Nah in Paris.
The first jazz record I bought was Native Dancer by Wayne Shorter and Milton Nascimento
My advice to new listeners: open your mind and your ears, forget about structure, feel the textures.
Go see live music and keep buying CDs!