Jazz suggestions

As a fan of rock/blues/reggae, I have always steered clear of jazz because some of it sounds so disjointed, almost as if the players can’t hear what their bandmates are playing. Having said that, I’m bothered that I may be missing out by listening to tracks which don’t suit me. Don’t get me wrong (sorry Ms Hinds) I love the improvisation on Cream’s version of Spoonful, for example so I would welcome suggestions for jazz that might appeal to me.

Have you read the Jazz thread on this forum?
Plenty of suggestions there.
There was also a similar thread posted some months ago from a member who wanted to dip their toe in the Jazz pool.
Worth a search.

Try some Miles Davis.

He had an enormous range of bewilderingly different styles.

‘Kind Of Blue’ is his most popular, and you may have heard quite a lot of it without realising what it was. Fantastic playing throughout the seven tracks on the LP. (I can’t remember if extras have been added for the CD reissues.)

For something gentler, his ‘Sketches Of Spain’ (think Rodrigo’s ‘Concierto de Aranjuez’) would make a wonderful intro to what he was all about.

My own favourite of his albums is ‘In A Silent Way’, recorded so well and so quietly that you can hear the hum of the valve amps being used for instruments used in the recording.


If you like it a bit eclectic and driven, try The Comet is Coming. Or Pharoh Sanders Got to have freedom, or more mainline Kamai Washington The Epic. My 2ps worth

+1 dont forget Bitches Brew but of course its all a matter of taste

I have never got on with ‘Bitches Brew’, but I acknowledge that that is my problem.

It would certainly not be my suggestion for a beginner to MD’s music, nor to jazz in general.

Totally avoid On the Corner, i couldn’t get on with that. I reckon Herbie Hancocks Taking Off as a starter, a bit of Hank Mobley, Chalie Mingus, Art Blakey would be accessible.


If we’re talking Herbie Hancock then try his album Headhunters. It’s Jazz but it’s also funky and very popular.
Depending on the type of rock you like you might find some Jazz Fusion a good way into Jazz proper.


If you are new to jazz, I would begin with the classics. Maybe the more mellow albums.

Miles Davis
Kind of blue, birth og the cool, Round Midnight.

Keith Jarrett.
The Köln Concert,

Bill Evans:
Sunday at the village vanguard, you must believe in spring, conversations with myself

Edit: typo, norwegian alphabeth and setup


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Try one of the 24 hour jazz streaming services. Naim recommend a few.
Let it play quietly in the background and see if anything piques your attention and enthusiasm.

Don’t be guided by what you are told is best. Let your ears do the walking.


Archie Shepp

My favourite album is probably True Ballads. Quite accessible for those new to jazz, not overly noodly


That looks good. I only have one Archie Shepp album, a duo with Mal Waldron. It’s one of my favourites.

The True Ballads cover looks awfully familiar…


Give ‘Charles Lloyd & The Marvels’ a try…

There is so much that comes under the Jazz banner much of the very modern at the time late 60’s British Jazz from the likes of Amancio D’Silva, Graham Collier and Ian Carr’s first record with Nucleus - ‘Elastic Rock’ might appeal if you like rock music.

Curious. I just looked up that album, it appears to be a photo from the Magnum archive…

The photo on the album cover is from Magnum photographer Elliot Erwitt and was taken in 1955.

I’ve been listening through some 60s jazz of late such as the Dave Brubeck quartet. On the back of the success of Time Out (and no doubt with strong encouragement from their record label!) they released a series of follow-up albums.

One of them, Time Further Out, has a track ‘Maori Blues’. How cool is it that, during a tour of New Zealand, Brubeck was inspired by the waiata (song/s) at the welcoming ceremony.

Given that touring the world must have cost a fortune, and New Zealand was and remains a tiny market, I guess they did some dates here as part of hopping across the Pacific.

From my recently acquired used copy:

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Most of those distant tours were sponsored by the US State Department.

Wow, I didn’t know that. Fascinating.