Much has been written of the significance for music of the jazz of 1959, and I have no special insights to share that illuminates any further. I grew up fascinated by 1979 and the cult of punk around it, and was lucky enough to catch some of the bands of 1991 when ‘grunge broke’.
But 1959 has such a mythical aura with music seemingly leaping light years forward in a way it’s hard to see at any other time I know of. Many of the great albums have their building blocks in 1956 and the following few years, such as Thelonious Monk’s Brilliant Corners, and Charlie Mingus’ Pithecanthropus Erectus, but ’59 saw the culmination of all the promise.
To name but a few, Giant Steps by John Coltrane, Kind of Blue and Porgy and Bess by Miles Davis, Mingus Ah Um by Charlie Mingus, Time Out by The Dave Brubeck Quartet, Moanin’ by Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, Jazz In Silhouette by Sun Ra and his Arkestra, Anatomy of a Murder by Duke Ellington, and the still wildly inventive The Shape of Jazz to Come by Ornette Coleman.
Anyway, here’s a playlist that gives a new angle on the scene with a new version of the playlist everyday, and with releases from a few years before and after, but all of it deeply embedded in this post-bop / cool jazz phenomenon.