Eleven – Nubya Garcia – Source – The jazz artist that will gain the biggest following of anyone on my list is this one. A young british phenom getting international acclaim and deserving of every bit of it. The Tiny Desk here captures all of her brilliance. Her story is a great one. I love this excerpt from this New York Time review,
A hunger to collaborate has shaped her journey so far. Mr. Boyd recalled seeing Ms. Garcia at the Brainchild Festival in Britain several years ago, dashing frantically from one stage to the next with her saxophone in tow. “I remember seeing her running across the fields,” Mr. Boyd said with a laugh. “It felt like she was playing with 10 bands. She’s one of the busiest people in the world.”
Twelve – Lomelda – Hannah – What a voice. What a journey of creative songwriting. A new discovery for me and again, thanks to Pitchfork she was my last discovery of the year and found her way to number twelve on the list.
Thirteen – Sparkle Division – To Feel Embraced – If St. Germain’s Tourist had a 2020 baby. House. Jazz. Funk. Electronic. Super surprised of the staying power of this one. Quite a bit of saxophone found its way into my list this year. The man behind the sax, William Basinski, carries this record in ways a great producer should.
Fourteen – Childish Gambino – 3.15.20 – You hated it. I know Anthony Fantano really hated it. I didn’t. Yes, the random song titles made track remembering a challenge. Yes, we all wonder if this was meant to be a legit release. Maybe Donald wanted you to be happy as you headed into a pandemic. Can’t hate him for that.
Here is track 42.26 released as “Feels Like Summer’ in the summer 0f 2019.
Fifteen – Gogo Penguin – Gogo Penguin – A jazz group that is finding their way into some semblance of mainstream. If you are old enough to remember the heydays of the record label, Windham Hill, you would understand that this jazz group would fit like a glove on that label. If you are not a jazz head this might be the artist who changes your mind.