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San Diego is home to a large number of world-class jazz musicians. The talent pool is deep here. Three of the top-ten local recordings are also represented on my top-ten discs from anywhere (see tomorrow's Top Ten Global releases).

Top Ten San Diego Jazz Records

  1. Bert Turetzky, George Lewis, Vinny Golia Triangulation II (Kadima Collective Recordings) Three monster musicians at the top of their game in a stunning,all improvised program that capitalizes on extended techniques and powerful listening abilities, resulting in an almost magical sense of communication.

  2. Geoffrey Keezer / Peter Sprague Band Mill Creek Road (SBE Records) Long wicked unisons, and intricate bass ostinati power this collection of original music with emphasis on melodic development and tricky rhythmic devices. Sprague and Keezer have a natural hook-up, and the bass of Hamilton Price locks tight with the drums of Duncan Moore.

  3. Bobby Bradford, Mark Dresser, Glenn Ferris Live In LA (Clean Feed) Free bop lives in this excellent program of swinging, rhythmically charged music. Bradford is one of the pioneers of free jazz, Ferris gets down and dirty, and Dresser holds it all together with his huge, woody sound, rock-solid time and out-of-the-box soloing.

  4. Bertram & Nancy Turetzky Spirit Song. (Imaginary Chicago Records) Bert's virtuosity is known the world over, but his wife Nancy's accomplishments are not as well known. A shame, because she is a flute master of the highest degree. Together they bring music of the 14th Century to vivid life, and explore contemporary classical music--much of which was written specifically for them.

  5. Leonard Patton / Geoffrey Keezer Expressions (Lenju Music Group) There is a special chemistry going on between the ecstatic piano of Keezer and the pliant, playful tenor of Patton. Extremely diverse program that references everyone from Monk to Tears For Fears. When the Bible said, "Make a joyful noise," these cats were listening.

  6. Trio M The Guest House (Enja) San Diego contrabass master Mark Dresser shines in this co-op trio with pianist Myra Melford and drummer Matt Wilson. Very strong original material from all three, and the musicianship could not be higher. Alternately probing and celebratory.

  7. Russell Bizzett Dream Street (Lazarus Music Productions) Bizzett has a ride cymbal concept, sound and articulation to die for. In this examination and exploration of standards, pianist Joshua White shines, and bassist Rob Thorsen pulses in support. They swing their asses off on "Take the Coltrane," and probe the depth of ballads like "Darn that dream."

  8. Jen Shyu & Mark Dresser Synastry (Pi Recordings) This duet sparkles all the way. Remarkable musician, this Shyu, she speaks seven languages, plays multiple instruments, studied opera and advanced improvisation, and lays it down with the sublime support of Dresser, who never draws the spotlight from her.

  9. Nate Jarrell The Next Chapter (Self Produced) Prime example of modern electric guitar music featuring Jarrell sharing the melodies with tenor saxophonist Peter August, who also writes several standout tunes on this disc. Great core band of Harley Magsino on bass, Ed Kornhauser on piano and Jeanette Kangas on drums.

  10. Sharon DuBois Here I Am (ShariLou Productions) Ms. DuBois has a smoky, supple alto and this is an excellent collection of funk oriented original material with jazzy ornaments. Very tight band that navigates the divide between Steely Dan and The Crusaders. When she sings harmonies with herself, the effect is glorious. Joshua White on piano, Stephen McKinney on bass, Glen McKinney on guitar, John Staten on drums and production. Heavyweight guests include trumpet master Gilbert Castellanos and saxophone legend Daniel Jackson.

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Comments

SharonDuBois Dec. 26, 2011 @ 5:43 p.m.

I am truly honored to be listed with my two favorite bassists, Bert Turetzky and Mark Dresses. Thank you Robert, for your acknowledgement of my work. It was truly a labor of love.

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