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Finalist Nominees for the 2008 Jazz Awards

SOURCE: Published:
Finalist nominees for the 2008 Jazz Awards, the Jazz Journalists Association's 12 annual celebration of excellence in jazz and jazz journalism, are hereby announced. Voting on these nominees by professional JJA members to determine one representative winner in each category will commence soon at Jazzhouse.org — members should watch for emails with further details. The Jazz Awards will be celebrated at a cocktail reception from 3 to 6 p.m. on Wednesday, June 18 at the Jazz Standard, 116 East 27th Street New York, New York. Information on tickets will also be forthcoming.

Lifetime Achievement in Jazz
(past winners are ineligible: Benny Carter, Max Roach, Sonny Rollins, Cecil Taylor, Ornette Coleman, John Lewis, Clark Terry, Dave Brubeck, Hank Jones, Roy Haynes, Andrew Hill)

  • Herbie Hancock
  • Marian McPartland
  • Oscar Peterson
  • Wayne Shorter
  • Lee Konitz


Musician of the Year

  • Terence Blanchard
  • Sonny Rollins
  • Herbie Hancock
  • Maria Schneider
  • Ornette Coleman


Up & Coming Musician of the Year

  • Christian Scott
  • Lionel Loueke
  • Peter Evans
  • Roberta Gambarini
  • Mantana Roberts
  • Tyshawn Sorey
  • Jaleel Shaw
  • Nicole Mitchell


Record of the Year

  • A Tale of God's Will, Terence Blanchard (Blue Note/EMI)
  • Sky Blue, Maria Schneider (ArtistShare)
  • The Joni Letters, Herbie Hancock (Verve)
  • Pilgrimage, Michael Brecker (Heads Up)
  • Abbey Sings Abbey, Abbey Lincoln (Verve)


Reissue of the Year

  • Compulsion, Andrew Hill (Blue Note)
  • Cornell 1964, Charles Mingus Sextet (Blue Note)
  • Folk Songs For Far Out Folk, Fred Katz (Reboot Stereophonic)
  • Sunshine of My Soul: Live at the Keystone Korner, Jaki Byard (HighNote)


Reissue box set

  • Lady Day: The Master Takes and Singles, Billie Holiday (Columbia)
  • The Complete On the Corner Sessions, Miles Davis (Columbia Legacy)
  • A Life in Time: The Roy Haynes Story, Roy Haynes (Dreyfus Jazz)
  • The Quincy Jones ABC/Mercury Big Band Jazz Sessions (Mosaic Records)
  • The Complete Lionel Hampton Victor Sessions 1937-1941 (Mosaic Records)
  • Chu Berry: Classic Columbia and Victor Sessions (Mosaic Records)
  • Duke Ellington — The Complete 1936-1940 Variety, Vocalion and Okey Small Groups Sessions (Mosaic Records>
  • How Low Can You Go: Anthology of the String Bass, 1925-1941 (Dust to Digital)


Record Label of the Year

  • Arbors
  • Blue Note
  • Clean Feed
  • Concord
  • ECM
  • Palmetto
  • Sunnyside


Composer of the Year

  • Maria Schneider
  • Terence Blanchard
  • Ornette Coleman
  • Carla Bley
  • Matt Shipp


Arranger of the Year

  • Bill Holman
  • Charles Tolliver
  • Gil Goldstein
  • Herbie Hancock
  • Dave Holland
  • Maria Schneider
  • Gerald Wilson
  • Uri Caine


Male Singer of the Year

  • Kurt Elling
  • Giacomo Gates
  • Andy Bey


Female Singer of the Year

  • Abbey Lincoln
  • Dee Dee Bridgewater
  • Dianne Reeves
  • Roberta Gambarini
  • Nancy King


Latin Jazz Album of the Year

  • Big Band Urban Folktales, Bobby Sanabria, (Jazzheads)
  • In Case You Missed It, Marlon Simon and the Nagual Spirits (Jazzheads)
  • Why Deny, Marty Sheller (PVR Records)
  • My Island, Rafi Malkiel (self-published)
  • Funk Tango, Paquito D'Rivera Quintet (Sunnyside)


Small Ensemble Group of the Year (< 9 pieces)

  • Dave Holland Quintet
  • Mostly Other People Do the Killing
  • Harry Allen/Joe Cohn Quartet
  • The Bad Plus
  • Ornette Coleman Quartet/Quintet


Large Ensemble of the Year (9+ pieces)

  • Maria Schneider Orchestra
  • Charles Tolliver Big Band
  • Mingus Big Band
  • Village Vanguard Jazz Orchestra
  • Gerald Wilson Orchestra


Trumpeter of the Year

  • Terence Blanchard
  • Dave Douglas
  • Peter Evans
  • Roy Hargrove
  • Cuong Vu


Trombonist of the Year

  • Conrad Herwig
  • Ray Anderson
  • Wycliffe Gordon
  • Robin Eubanks
  • Roswell Rudd
  • Steve Swell


Player of the Year of Instruments Rare in Jazz

  • Scott Robinson, reeds, brass, antiques
  • Bela Fleck banjo
  • Erik Friedlander, cello
  • Fred Lonberg-Holm, cello
  • Daniel Smith, bassoon


Alto player of the year

  • Ornette Coleman
  • Steve Lehmann
  • Steve Wilson
  • Phil Woods
  • Lee Konitz


Tenor player of the year

  • Joshua Redman
  • Sonny Rollins
  • Tony Malaby
  • Joe Lovano


Soprano Saxophonist of the Year

  • Branford Marsalis
  • Dave Liebman
  • Jane Ira Bloom
  • Wayne Shorter


Baritone saxophonist of the year

  • Scott Robinson
  • Mats Gustafsson
  • Gary Smulyan
  • James Carter
  • Joe Temperley


Clarinetist of the Year

  • Anat Cohen
  • Don Byron
  • Ken Peplowski
  • Marty Ehrlich
  • Paquito D'Rivera
  • Perry Robinson


Flutist of the Year

  • Frank Wess
  • Jane Bunnett
  • Lew Tabackin
  • Nicole Mitchell
  • Sam Rivers


Pianist of the Year

  • Cecil Taylor
  • Hank Jones
  • Herbie Hancock
  • McCoy Tyner
  • Myra Melford
  • Stefano Bollani


Organ-keyboards of the Year

  • Joey DeFrancesco
  • Dr. Lonnie Smith
  • Gary Versace
  • Larry Goldings


Guitarist of the Year

  • Bill Frisell
  • Lionel Loueke
  • Pat Metheny
  • Russell Malone


Bassist of the Year

  • Charlie Haden
  • Christian McBride
  • Mark Dresser
  • Ron Carter
  • William Parker


Electric Bassist of the Year

  • Steve Swallow
  • Stanley Clarke
  • Stomu Takeishi
  • Marcus Miller



Strings Player of the Year

  • Billy Bang, violin
  • Erik Friedlander, cello
  • Jenny Scheinman, violin
  • Mark Feldman, violin
  • Regina Carter, violin


Mallets Player of the Year

  • Stefon Harris
  • Steve Nelson
  • Joe Locke
  • Gary Burton
  • Bobby Hutcherson


Percussionist of the Year

  • Candido Camero
  • Cyro Baptista
  • Hamid Drake
  • Kahil El 'Zabar
  • Marilyn Mazur


Drummer of the Year

  • Hamid Drake
  • Matt Wilson
  • Paul Motian
  • Roy Haynes
  • Jeff “Tain" Watts
  • Tyshawn Sorey
  • Paal Nilssen-Love


Jazz Journalism Categories



Jazz Journalism Lifetime Achievement Award
(previous winners ineligible: Whitney Balliett, Stanley Dance, Nat Hentoff, Dan Morgenstern, Ira Gitler, Gary Giddins, Gene Lees, Bob Blumenthal, Howard Mandel, Francis Davis)

  • Don Heckman, jazz critic Los Angeles Times, beginning in 1960s at New York Times
  • Alyn Shipton, The Times in London, BBC Radio, author, editor, educator, lecturer
  • Doug Ramsey, author, biographer, blogger, editor, print journalist since 1975 in Jazz Times, Down Beat, Dallas Morning News, Texas Monthly
  • Stanley Crouch, author, artistic consultant, broadcast commentator, columnist in New York Daily News, New Republic, Jazz Times, Village Voice, others
  • Larry Kart, author, Down Beat, Chicago Tribune


Excellence in Jazz Broadcasting: The Willis Conover-Marian McPartland Award
(previous winners ineligible: (previous winners ineligible: Phil Schaap, Neil Tesser, Marian McPartland, Dr. Billy Taylor, Kenny Washington, Michael Bourne, Alyn Shipton, Steve Schwartz, Rhonda Hamilton, Eric Jackson, Bob Porter)



  • Leigh Kamman, career 1940-2007, includes WMIN, KSTP and “The Jazz Image," for Minnesota Public Radio
  • Linda Yohn, Music Director, WEMU, Ypsilanti, Ohio
  • Nancy Wilson, host of “Jazz Set," NPR
  • Ted Panken, program host and interviewer, WKCR, NYC


Excellence in Newspaper, Magazine or Online Feature or Review Writing of the Year: The Helen Dance-Robert Palmer Award

  • Larry Blumenfeld, Jazziz, Wall Street Journal, Village Voice
  • Ben Ratliff, New York Times
  • Nate Chinen, New York Times
  • Will Friedwald, The New York Sun


Best Periodical Covering Jazz

  • Downbeat
  • JazzTimes
  • Cadence
  • Signal2Noise


Best Website Concentrating on Jazz



Best Book About Jazz

  • Lee Konitz: Conversations on the Improviser's Art by Andy Hamilton (University of Michigan Press)
  • Miles Ornette Cecil — Jazz Beyond Jazz by Howard Mandel (Routledge)
  • Playing the Changes: Milt Hinton's Life in Stories and Photographs, by Milt Hinton, David Berger and Holly Maxon (Vanderbilt University Press)
  • Coltrane: The Story of a Sound by Ben Ratliff (Farrar, Straus and Giroux)


Excellence in Photography: The Lona Foote/ Bob Parent Award
(previous winners ineligible: William Claxton, William Gottlieb, Herman Leonard, Jimmy Katz, Chuck Stewart, Enid Farber, Ken Franckling, Lee Tanner, Jack Vartoogian, Gene Martin)

  • Milt Hinton (posthumous)
  • Mitchell Seidel
  • Jos L.Knaepen
  • Lourdes Delgado


Jazz Events Producer of the Year

  • Ajay Heble, Guelph Jazz Festival and Colloquium
  • Bill Royston, Portland (OR) Jazz Festival
  • Jack Kleinsinger, Highlights in Jazz (NYC)
  • Patricia Nicholson-Parker, Vision Festival (New York)
  • Jazz at Lincoln Center (NYC)
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