1 Pat Metheny Extraordinary achievements down through the decades whether on world tours with the Pat Metheny Group, his own innovations (for instance the pioneering use of guitar synthesizer and his own 'robot' Orchestrion) or with such icons of free music as Ornette Coleman and Derek Bailey and in his interpretations of the music of John Zorn, the Missourian continues a story picked up by Charlie Christian and continued by Wes Montgomery in terms of innovation, new dialects and vocabulary, sheer virtuosity and joy in performance.
2 George Benson. The ultimate communicator.
3 John Scofield. A bluesician at heart.
4 John McLaughlin. Into the mystic: IndoJazz innovator.
5 Carlos Santana. Latin-jazz and rock master.
6 Kenny Burrell. Made history with Jimmy Smith.
7 Bill Frisell. Guitar everyman. Americana and freebop distilled.
8 Terje Rypdal. Prog jazz exemplar and icon.
9 Lionel Loueke: Afrojazz innovator.
10 Eivind Aarset: Scandi futurejazz innovator
11 Mary Halvorson: Avant, post Derek Bailey, icon
12 Russell Malone Mainstream accompanist par excellence
13 Kurt Rosenwinkel Consummate skill coming out of the heart of jazz
14 Julian Lage: Now in his prime: can cover anything
15 Marc Ribot: From Tom Waits to Ayler can do it all
16 Phil Robson
17 Mike Stern
18 Mike Walker: north of England legend. Stylistically unique
19 Wolfgang Muthspiel: sublime chamber jazz practitioner and more
20 Kevin Eubanks: knows how to reach the heart of the matter and communicate
LISTEN Milonga Del Angel by the Anat Cohen Tentet
A gorgeously arranged latinate opening track from Triple Helix new from the Anat Cohen tentet next month, a co-commission for the Symphony Center Presents Jazz Series to celebrate its 25th anniversary and Carnegie Hall where it was premiered earlier this year amounting to a three-movement concerto. Musical director Oded Lev-Ari says: “Anat and I have always shared a musical connection that has been effortless and unspoken. As we have each developed as musicians and become proficient in various styles, genres and disciplines, that fundamental musical understanding has remained unchanged.”