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May 10, 2011


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jp gelbon

the "A half-step below this esteemed group is a second tier of greats" must include, from my point of view, chu berry and johnny griffin too ( and maybe many others...

Michael E.

Sounds like a great record, and it's good to see Thompson getting more and more attention. Among the other who deserve props for bringing Thompson into the limelight is Michael Blake, whose fantastic "The World Awakes: A Tribute to Eli 'Lucky' Thompson" came out on the Danish Stunt label in 2007.


I'd certainly agree about Lucky (and those two albums especially) as well as all of the the other players on the list. However in an art predicated on personal expression, the whole idea of ranking players seems suspect. If the main criteria is innovation, then Hawkins and Trane are clearly at the top of the heap - but as much as I love those guys, I derive as much pleasure from listening to Hank or Zoot. And then there's Harold Land, Junior Cook, James Clay, Warne Marsh, George Coleman...the list goes on!

Mike Milner

A tremdous talent. Thank you Marc for taking the time to pay tribute to Lucky. Check Lucky out on the Miles Davis "All Stars" recording. He's on "Walkin'" and "Blue 'n' Boogie".

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  • Marc Myers writes on music and the arts for The Wall Street Journal. He is author of "Why Jazz Happened" (Univ. of Calif. Press). Founded in 2007, JazzWax was named the 2015 "Blog of the Year" by the Jazz Journalists Association.
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