All-Star Lists

Nick DeRiso’s Mid-Year Best of 2014 (R&B, Jazz and Blues): Paul Rodgers, Rebirth, Walter Trout, Brad Mehldau, Wilko Johnson + Roger Daltrey

Nick DeRiso’s Mid-Year Best of 2014 (R&B, Jazz and Blues): Paul Rodgers, Rebirth, Walter Trout, Brad Mehldau, Wilko Johnson + Roger Daltrey

Little other than a sense of soul holds this list together. That’s more than enough.

Fred Phillips’ Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Southern Rock and Country): Bob Wayne, Sturgill Simpson, Mat D, Jackson Taylor, Willie Nelson

Fred Phillips’ Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Southern Rock and Country): Bob Wayne, Sturgill Simpson, Mat D, Jackson Taylor, Willie Nelson

Sturgill Simpson? The genuine article. Bob Wayne? Back with his best ever.

S. Victor Aaron’s Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Fusion Jazz): Nels Cline Singers, Medeski Martin & Wood, Jaco Pastorius

S. Victor Aaron’s Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Fusion Jazz): Nels Cline Singers, Medeski Martin & Wood, Jaco Pastorius

Everything from ambient post-rock to improvisational, to scattered rock-jazz.

Preston Frazier’s Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Rock, Pop and Jazz): Simon Phillips, Kere Buchanan, Nathan East, Oz Noy, Judith Owen, Toto

Preston Frazier’s Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Rock, Pop and Jazz): Simon Phillips, Kere Buchanan, Nathan East, Oz Noy, Judith Owen, Toto

Already, we’ve heard so much great stuff from the Toto family tree of music.

S. Victor Aaron’s Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Avant Garde & Experimental Jazz): Jimmy Giuffre, Roscoe Mitchell, Jamie Saft/Joe Morris

S. Victor Aaron’s Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Avant Garde & Experimental Jazz): Jimmy Giuffre, Roscoe Mitchell, Jamie Saft/Joe Morris

The appeal of this music is its unbiased diversity and lack of set rules.

Nick DeRiso’s Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Rock, Roots and Prog): John Oates, Jack White, David Crosby, Joe Henry, GOASTT, California Breed

Nick DeRiso’s Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Rock, Roots and Prog): John Oates, Jack White, David Crosby, Joe Henry, GOASTT, California Breed

A career-defining three-EP set, a stirring comeback, another thrilling head scratcher.

S. Victor Aaron’s Mid-Year Best of 2014  (Modern and Mainstream Jazz): Steve Lehman, Jamie Saft, Matthew Shipp, Joe Beck

S. Victor Aaron’s Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Modern and Mainstream Jazz): Steve Lehman, Jamie Saft, Matthew Shipp, Joe Beck

The future of jazz looks blindingly bright.

Fred Phillips’ Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Hard Rock and Metal): Anti-Mortem, Down, Lacuna Coil

Fred Phillips’ Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Hard Rock and Metal): Anti-Mortem, Down, Lacuna Coil

10 early favorites, plus some great stuff to look forward to later this year.

S. Victor Aaron’s Mid-Year Best of 2014  (Non-Jazz): Jack White, Me’Shell Ndegéocello, Drive-By Truckers, Lucinda Williams

S. Victor Aaron’s Mid-Year Best of 2014 (Non-Jazz): Jack White, Me’Shell Ndegéocello, Drive-By Truckers, Lucinda Williams

Here are the seven best albums outside of realm of jazz so far in 2014. So says me.

S. Victor Aaron’s Top Unreviewed Jazz and Fusion Records of 2013: Ivo Perelman, Frank Rosaly

S. Victor Aaron’s Top Unreviewed Jazz and Fusion Records of 2013: Ivo Perelman, Frank Rosaly

So many great records to rave about…and so little time to rave. Last year I started a new tradition with a “just one more list before we’re done with lists” kind of list.