2018 Readers’ Poll Results

JazzTimes readers pick their favorites of the year: artists, groups, albums, venues, festivals, radio shows, podcasts, and more

Roy Hargrove (photo: Marek Lazarski)

Voting for the 2018 JazzTimes Readers’ Poll was conducted via an online survey posted at jazztimes.com. Winners are bolded; runners-up are listed below in order of number of votes. When casting their ballots, readers were asked to focus on artists’ achievements occurring between January and December 2018.

BEST OF ALL
Artist of the Year
Roy Hargrove
Wayne Shorter
Kurt Elling
Cécile McLorin Salvant

New Artist
Jeff Goldblum & the Mildred Snitzer Orchestra
James Francies
John Medeski’s Mad Skillet
María Grand

New Release
Kamasi Washington Heaven and Earth (Young Turks)
Wayne Shorter Emanon (Blue Note)
Chick Corea + Steve Gadd Band Chinese Butterfly (Stretch/Concord)
Jamie Baum Septet + Bridges (Sunnyside)

Vocal Release
Cécile McLorin Salvant The Window (Mack Avenue)
Kurt Elling The Questions (OKeh/Sony Masterworks)
Esperanza Spalding 12 Little Spells (Concord)
Gregory Porter Nat “King” Cole & Me (Blue Note)

Historical/Vault/Reissue Release
John Coltrane Both Directions at Once: The Lost Album (Impulse!)
Miles Davis and John Coltrane The Final Tour: The Bootleg Series, Vol. 6 (Sony Legacy)
Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong Cheek to Cheek: The Complete Duet Recordings (Verve)
Charles Mingus Jazz in Detroit/Strata Concert Gallery/46 Selden (BBE)

BEST GROUPS
Acoustic Small Group/Artist
Wayne Shorter Quartet
Roy Hargrove
Chick Corea
Ambrose Akinmusire

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Electric/Jazz-Rock/Contemporary Group/Artist
Snarky Puppy
Herbie Hancock
Jack DeJohnette/Ravi Coltrane/Matthew Garrison
Esperanza Spalding

Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra
Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra (photo: Sarah Escarraz)

Big Band/Large Ensemble
Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra
Christian McBride Big Band
Maria Schneider Orchestra
Orrin Evans and the Captain Black Big Band

BEST OF THE INDUSTRY
Record Label
Blue Note
ECM
Mack Avenue
Posi-Tone

Syndicated Radio Program
Jazz Night in America
Radio Deluxe with John Pizzarelli and Jessica Molaskey
Jazz After Hours with Jeff Hanley
Jazz Inspired with Judy Carmichael

Podcast
Straight No Chaser
We Insist! Jazz Speaks Out
The Checkout
A Noise from the Deep

Festival
Newport Jazz Festival
Detroit Jazz Festival
North Sea Jazz Festival
Montreux Jazz Festival

Nightclub
Village Vanguard

Blue Note (NYC)
Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola
Smalls

Documentary
Quincy
Blue Note Records: Beyond the Notes
The Jazz Ambassadors
Milford Graves: Full Mantis

Book
Dexter Gordon: Sophisticated Giant by Maxine Gordon
Playing Changes: Jazz for the New Century by Nate Chinen
Tony Bennett: Onstage and in the Studio by Tony Bennett with Dick Golden
Six Days at Ronnie Scott’s: Billy Cobham on Jazz Fusion and the Art of Creation by Brian Gruber

BEST MUSICIANS
Trumpeter
Roy Hargrove
Wynton Marsalis
Ambrose Akinmusire
Ingrid Jensen

Trombonist
Wycliffe Gordon
Michael Dease
Trombone Shorty
John Fedchock

Clarinetist
Anat Cohen
Paquito D’Rivera
Don Byron
Victor Goines

Tenor Saxophonist
Wayne Shorter
Chris Potter
Branford Marsalis
Joshua Redman

Alto Saxophonist
Kenny Garrett
Miguel Zenón
Steve Wilson
Tia Fuller

Soprano Saxophonist
Wayne Shorter
Branford Marsalis
Chris Potter
Kenny Garrett

Baritone Saxophonist
Gary Smulyan
James Carter
Claire Daly
Hamiet Bluiett

Nicole Mitchell
Nicole Mitchell (photo: Amanda Friedman)

Flutist
Nicole Mitchell
Hubert Laws
Jamie Baum
Charles Lloyd

Violinist
Regina Carter
Jean Luc Ponty
Mark Feldman
Sara Caswell

Pianist
Chick Corea
Herbie Hancock
Brad Mehldau
Kenny Barron

Keyboardist
Herbie Hancock
Chick Corea
Robert Glasper
Craig Taborn

Organist
Joey DeFrancesco
Dr. Lonnie Smith
John Medeski
Cory Henry

Guitarist
Pat Metheny
John McLaughlin
John Scofield
Russell Malone

Acoustic Bassist
Christian McBride
Linda May Han Oh
Ron Carter
Esperanza Spalding

Electric Bassist
Esperanza Spalding
Marcus Miller
Stanley Clarke
Thundercat

Vibraphonist
Stefon Harris
Warren Wolf
Joe Locke
Joel Ross

Percussionist
Tyshawn Sorey
Poncho Sanchez
Zakir Hussain
Pedrito Martinez

Drummer
Jack DeJohnette
Roy Haynes
Terri Lyne Carrington
Brian Blade

Male Vocalist
Kurt Elling
Gregory Porter
Tony Bennett
Theo Bleckmann

Female Vocalist
Cécile McLorin Salvant
Esperanza Spalding
Dianne Reeves
Diana Krall

Composer
Wayne Shorter
Maria Schneider
Wynton Marsalis
Pat Metheny

Maria Schneider
Maria Schneider (photo: Briene Lermitte)

Arranger
Maria Schneider
Wynton Marsalis
John Fedchock
Orrin Evans

Misc. Instrumentalist
Béla Fleck (banjo)
Tomeka Reid (cello)
Richard Galliano (accordion)
Grégoire Maret (harmonica)

Vocal Group
Take 6
The Manhattan Transfer
New York Voices
The Four Freshmen

See the 2017 JazzTimes Readers’ Poll results.