Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Our top Jazz/Blues artists

Greetings, everyone!  Today we look at our top jazz and/or blues artists.  I know that jazz and blues are not necessarily hot musical genres in this day and age, but many artists have, over the years, written and released timeless pieces that defy age.  Still, plenty new artists bring back the jazz by incorporating hints of other genres and meshing them into other styles.  The styles of jazz music are more plentiful than one might imagine. 

Here are my top three.

3. Gene Harris.  Harris is from Boise, Idaho, so he gets immediate props.  Not only that, but he is a skilled musician who can play multiple instruments such as jazz guitar, saxophone, piano, etc.  He plays what I would deem cool jazz, with plenty of soulful melodies and grooves. Check out Dear Blues below.

2. Contemporary Noise Quintet. Who knew Polish electro-jazz could be so fun?  They use copious amounts of electronic noise to create a smooth jazz experience like none you've ever experienced. Electro-jazz, often referred to as nu-jazz, is a funky subgenre built from electronica.  Check out P.I.G. below.

1. Fiona Apple.  Ever since "Tidal" was released in the late 90s, I have been a fan of Fiona Apple.  She may not be primarily known as a jazz artist, but the music she writes and performs is very much jazz and blues-oriented.  She is perhaps the most famous modern jazz singer.  Her style is bluesy vocal jazz geared toward a more mainstream audience.  Listen to Love Ridden from her album "When the Pawn..." below.

Kristy's list follows.

Hello everyone.  So as you know we are listing our three favorite jazz/blues artists.  Again this is a category where I had to really search my collection to come up with something.  As usual I was surprised when I started doing a little research and found out that some of this great music resides on my I-pod. 

3. Etta James: At Last.  Etta James is not a name you hear very often.  She was born in 1938 and she started her musical career in the 50's.  In 1961 she released At Last.  This became her signature song.  Most of you know this song once you hear it.  It's interesting because as I looking at the different sites to upload this song I noticed that many many people have made covers of this song.  I think that Miss James does it the best.  Her soul full voice is one of a kind and therefor hard to duplicate.  Here is her classic At Last.

2. Michael Bubl'e: Feeling Good.  Michael Bubl'e came onto the music scene in 2005 with his chart topping album It's Time.  I had never heard of him until I watched the movie The Wedding Date.  He sang two or three songs on the soundtrack including his hit Home.  That song really stuck with me for some reason and I have liked him ever since.  This came as a complete shock to me because he is the first jazz musician that I have really liked.  Below is his version of Feeling Good.  I love how this track starts out with his voice and some strings.  After a few moments you get the rest of the big band joining in and you can't help but sway to the music.  Check it out.

1. Norah Jones.  It was really hard for me to choose just one song from her.  I really enjoy her music.  I like it because her bluesy voice sets the mood for her songs as soon as they begin.  It doesn't take very long to become a fan.  I chose Turn Me On because this sing is HOT!  This song is sexy in a good way. The combination of the  smooth jazz with Norah's voice is amazing. It doesn't take vulgar lyrics and obscene references to set to mood.  Listen to it below and let me know what you think.  Thanks for listening and enjoy :)

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