Music

Listen to the best new jazz music in one Spotify playlist

© Press
By Phillip Williams
A new wave of jazz musicians in the US and UK are blending genres and pushing the sound forward. Immerse yourself in the exciting world of modern-day jazz with this Red Bull Music playlist.
Jazz is undoubtedly having a moment right now. In the US, saxophonist Kamasi Washington is breathing new life into spiritual jazz, while bassist Thundercat continues to evolve his distinct take on cosmic jazz fusion, working with artists as diverse as Flying Lotus and Kendrick Lamar.
In the UK, Moses Boyd, Shabaka Hutchings, Nubya Garcia, Maisha, Ezra Collective and more are forging a new jazz sound that's open to the influence of spiritual jazz, hip-hop and UK dance genres like grime, UK garage and broken beat.
Keep tabs on this new golden age of jazz by listening to Red Bull Music's New Jazz Styles playlist below, and discover some of the best new jazz artists and tracks of the moment. Scroll down for more from some of contemporary jazz's most exciting artists.
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Kamasi Washington

Washington was raised in Inglewood, California, the home of gangsta rap, but took a very different path. A wiz on tenor saxophone, he's performed with Kendrick Lamar and Lauryn Hill, while his solo work, as heard on his 2018 double album Heaven & Earth, is the refinement of a modern style that draws upon spiritual jazz and big band music.

Joe Armon-Jones

A virtuoso keys player and a member of Ezra Collective, Joe Armon-Jones is one of the most far-sighted players on the London jazz scene. His excellent Starting Today album mixed jazz-funk and urban soul styles, and he followed it up in early 2019 with Starting Today In Dub – a collection of spaced-out, bass-heavy dub remixes.
Music · 22 min
See. Hear. Now. with Joe Armon-Jones

Kamaal Williams

Kamaal Williams is the pseudonym of South London's Henry Wu, a bandleader who rose to fame as one half of Yussef Kamaal. Standing a little apart from the London jazz scene, his distinct sound melds the vision and virtuosity of '70s jazz fusion with the influence of grime and garage.
Music · 5 min
Henry Wu presents Kamaal Williams and Children Of Zeus – Still Standing

Moses Boyd

The drummer to watch on the London jazz scene, Moses Boyd has scooped two MOBO awards, collaborated with everyone from Four Tet and Little Simz to Lonnie Liston Smith, and is currently a resident on UK radio station BBC 1XTRA, spreading good vibes across the UK. Check out his album Displaced Diaspora, released on his own Exodus Records.
Music · 16 min
See. Hear. Now. with Moses Boyd

Thundercat

Stephen Lee Bruner first distinguished himself as a session musician, playing on Erykah Badu's 2008 LP New Amerykah, Flying Lotus's Cosmogramma album and Kendrick Lamar's landmark To Pimp A Butterfly record. Increasingly, though, the LA-born bassist has become the main event, with albums like Apocalypse and Drunk showing off his limber, cosmically-minded mastery of soul, funk and jazz fusion.

Nubya Garcia

Another leading light of the London scene, saxophonist Nubya Garcia broke out in 2017 with the excellent Nubya's 5ive album for the Jazz:Refreshed label. She's also a member of the London groups Nérija and Maisha, and was one of the first of the new-school acts to start appearing at non-jazz music festivals.
Music · 20 min
See. Hear. Now. with Nubya Garcia

Makaya McCraven

Son of the celebrated jazz drummer Stephen McCraven, Chicago-based Makaya McCraven has distinguished himself as a daring voice in jazz's renaissance. Avant-garde of temperament and influenced by the rhythms of hip-hop and electronic music, his 2018 album for Chicago's reliably brilliant International Anthem label, Universal Beings, is a must-listen.

Poppy Ajudha

South London jazz vocalist Poppy Ajudha has a voice that pitches up somewhere between classic and modern – rich and smoky enough that you might compare her to any number of vintage soul singers, but with a sensibility that is bang up to date. Spilling Into You – a collaboration with Kojey Radical – scrutinises love from a feminist perspective, while Tepid Soul is an expression of mixed-race identity that asks difficult questions. Barack Obama loves her.

Shabaka Hutchings

Shabaka Hutchings is everywhere. The saxophonist and bandleader is one of the most prolific voices in the UK jazz firmament, fronting the pan-global group Shabaka & the Ancestors, polemical, Mercury-nominated skronkers Sons Of Kemet, and the cosmic jazz trio The Comet Is Coming. The latter have just released their banging new album Trust In The Lifeforce Of The Deep Mystery on prestigious jazz label Impulse! and are set to take this summer's festivals by storm.
Music · 21 min
See. Hear. Now with The Comet Is Coming

Tenderlonious

Flautist and saxophonist Ed "Tenderlonious" Hawthorne crafted a modern classic in 2018 with The Shakedown, a slinky excursion through jazz, funk, and African and Brazilian rhythms, backed by all-star players The 22archestra. He's back with a new album from his quartet Ruby Rushton this April.
Music · 6 min
Tenderlonious and 22archestra perform Yussef's Groove live