A truly straightforward year in terms of trends-like the stock market. No great disruptions, some solid forward progress. Music following the path set forth from previous years. Music built on the foundation of the past should be solid and dependable, and that is what we got-super, solid quality. In many senses this is an after-effect of the torrents of variety we've been subjected to over the last 10 years with the Web and uncontrolled access!
Not so, even in a year where innovation and variety seemed to reside somewhere else we relished the sounds that featured surprise and elasticity of sensibilities even if based on traditional contexts, like Jessy Lanza's or Ibrahim Maalouf's reworking of past concepts.
Matt Mitchell's work songs recalled the Goldbergs of the past. DJ Sprinkles kept the past alive re-working new classics. Oh yes, so did Blaser taking songs from the dark ages (not so, I think) and making them relevant to today's mobile audience.
And the innovations came on the back of the past even with those who like the future- Julia Holter's vocal inventions, Ruspo's playful bag of tricks. Blake's reworking of the gospel playbook. All inventive and we are the bets for it.
I think music, in many ways, is like the power-we drill and crave it to run our imaginative well-being and yet with the scarcity scare of the past 20 years here in the land of plenty. . . maybe there's a lot more of it to go around than people have leading on to. Join in the fun.
I'm happy that I have a well stocked Best of list from jazz as it has rebounded with stregth and vigor.
There is no shortage of great music in today's or yesterday's worlds-you just need to be hungry enough to be willing to find it. I do spend most of my wakings hours listening and its always around the corner. Thankfully.