June 14, 2024


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Jazz journalist association announces 2019 awards nominees

NEW YORK CITY — Finalists for the 24th annual Jazz Awards presented by the Jazz Journalists Association have been announced at www.JJAJazzAwards.org, showing the generational continuity and diversity of talent making music and creating media about today.

Elder and younger musicians, first-time nominees and veterans with career-capping works, women in the vanguard as composers, bandleaders and instrumentalists – some 400 nominees in 39 categories of excellence in jazz music and jazz journalism demonstrate the strength of a creative community.

See the entire list of nominees here: https://www.jjajazzawards.org/p/2019-nominees.htmlThe JJA also has announced 22 Jazz Heroes, being celebrated by local jazz fans in 20 US cities. See Jazz heroes here: https://www.jjajazzawards.org/p/2019-jazz-heroes.html

Nominees are chosen by the votes of the professional journalist members of the Jazz Journalists Association, based on work done in calendar year 2018 (with the exception of Lifetime Achievement Awards categories).

Among Jazz Award ballot highlights: Three unique pianists — Chick Corea (77), Ahmad Jamal (88) and Harold Mabern (83) — as well as bassist Ron Carter (81) and saxophonist Pharoah Sanders (78) — are the Lifetime Achievement in Jazz nominees. All are highly acclaimed, much recorded, widely traveled innovators, composers, improvisers and  ensemble leaders, whose accomplishments define six decades’ of jazz-in-development and fruition.

Jazz Musician of the Year nominees represent a different demographic. Although 85-year-old saxophonist/composer Wayne Shorter is nominated, so are electric guitarist Mary Halvorson (39),bassist-bandleader-broadcaster Christian McBride (46) and vocalist Cecile McLorin Salvant (29), requiring JJA’s member voters to compare apples to oranges in determining the single most representative musician of calendar year 2018.

That same challenge confronts the JJA’s professional members as they vote in journalism categories, with nominees for Lifetime Achievement in Jazz Journalism including Nate Chinen, WBGO director of editorial content and former New York Times critic; Eugene Holley, Jr., a much-published freelancer; Dan Ouellette, an author, columnist and contributor to DownBeat, among other publications; Ben Ratliffe, author and former New York Times critic, and John Szwed, biographer of Sun Ra, Miles Davis, Billie Holiday and Alan Lomax as well as contributor to the Village Voice and emeritus professor at Columbia and Yale universities.

Winners of the 2019 JJA Jazz Awards in all categories, determined by second-round voting by the JJA’s professional journalist members, will be announced at jjajazzawards.orgon May 1, with Awards presentations to be made at recipients’ performances throughout the summer.  For further information about the JJA Jazz Awards or the JJA itself, email jazzawards@jazzjournalists.org

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