Written by Luke Alex Davis 9:19 pm Jazz

The 42 Greatest Jazz Albums On Glenn Kelly’s Floor By His Coffee Table

I love an album list with creativity and Glenn Kelly made a great one in the name of jazz.

Jazz album cover

I love an album list with creativity and Glenn Kelly made a great one in the name of jazz.

I’ve responded to criticisms of jazz before. They’re often tired and lack knowledge of its history. So when I read that Glenn Kelly had done the same, I could relate.

People in the U.S. are really into hating jazz. Remember when a bunch of us got really cranky about that Buzzfeed “What’s the deal with jazz?” thing? (Yeah, no, I’m not gonna link to it.) Then just a couple of weeks ago on the Twitter a high-profile profile writer recounted how Billy Bob Thornton once told her that jazz was a long con and that anyone who said they liked it was just doing a long con themselves.

A long con?! Before a vein pops in my head, I’ll move on.

On his blog, Some Came Running, Glenn picked 42 jazz albums “on the floor by my coffee table” which I could also relate to (LPs on the floor rather than owning that many jazz albums). And it wasn’t a snobbish list or one with an agenda; in his own words “it’s just by whatever I picked up first”. Can’t argue with that.

I recommend you read the blog post but if you want to see the full list, you can see it below.

  1. Tina Brooks, Back to the Tracks (Blue Note, recorded 1960)
  2. Lee Konitz, Brad Meldau, Charlie Haden, Paul Motian, Live At Birdland (ECM 2011)
  3. Cedar Walton, Bob Berg, Sam Jones, Billy Higgins, Eastern Rebellion 2 (Ti, 1977)
  4. Sonny Stitt Sits In With The Oscar Peterson Trio (Verve, 1959)
  5. Sounds of Liberation (Corbett Versus Dempsey, 2019)
  6. Harold Land, The Fox, (Contemporary, 1958)
  7. Paul Motian box set (ECM, 2013)
  8. Wes Montgomery Trio (Riverside, 1959)
  9. Dave Douglas, Uri Caine, Andrew Cyrille, Devotion (Greenleaf, 2019)
  10. William Parker/In Order to Survive, Live at Shapeshifter (Aum, 2019)
  11. Dunmall, Gibbs, Taylor, Young Landscapes (FMR, 2019)
  12. Matt Mitchell, Phalanx Ambassadors (Pi, 2019)
  13. Keith Jarrett, Arbour Zena, (ECM, 1976)
  14. Houston Person with Ron Carter, Just Between Friends (High Note, 2005)
  15. Forde Gjerstad  with William Parker and Hamid Drake, On Reade Street (FMR, 2006)
  16. Steve Kuhn Trio w/ Joey Baron and Steve Swallow, To and From The Heart, (Sunnyside 2018)
  17. Duke Ellington Octet, At The Rainbow Grill 1967 (Gambit, ?)
  18. Bill Evans, California Here I Come (Verve, 1967)
  19. Art Pepper, Live at Fat Tuesday’s (Elemental, 2005 recorded 1988)
  20. Keith Jarrett, Paris/London, Testament (ECM, 2009)
  21. Barry Guy @ 70 (FSR 2018)
  22. Dexter Gordon, 5 Original Albums
  23. Dexter Gordon Quartet, Tokyo 1975 (Elemental 2018)
  24. The Tal Farlow Monkey Album (Norgran, 1955)
  25. Art Blakey, The Jazz Messengers (Columbia 1956)
  26. The Max Roach Trio, Featuring The Legendary Hassan (Atlantic 1965)
  27. Walter Bishop Jr. Trio, Speak Low (Venus 1993)
  28. Randy Weston Trio Plus Cecil Payne (Fresh Sound compilation 2012)
  29. The John Coltrane Quartet, The Complete Africa/Brass Sessions (Impulse, 1961/1995)
  30. Art Blakey, Indestructible (Blue Note, 1964)
  31. Count Basie, April in Paris (Verve, 1958)
  32. The Amazing Bud Powell, Volume One (Blue Note, 1951)
  33. Cannonball Adderley with Bill Evans, You Know What I Mean? (Riverside, 1961)
  34. Paul Bley, Footloose (Savoy, 1960)
  35. Art Taylor, AT’s Delight (Blue Note, 1960)
  36. The Lucky Thompson Quartet, Lucky Strike (Prestige 1964)
  37. Sonny Rollins, The Bridge (RCA, 1962)
  38. Oscar Peterson, My Favorite Instrument (Verve, 1968)
  39. Duke Ellington and Ray Brown, This One’s For Blanton (Pablo, 1975)
  40. Bill Evans, Some Other Time (Resonance, 2017/1968)
  41. McCoy Tyner, Today and Tomorrow (Impulse, 1963)
  42. Bill Evans, Another Time (Resonance 2016/1968)