George Benson
The Greatest Hits of All
Places
Keith Jarrett

Jazz » Contemporary Jazz » Contemporary Jazz

Contemporary Jazz is essentially a catch-all term for the various permutations of popular, mainstream jazz of the 1980s and '90s. While those years were certainly not devoid of complex, cerebral jazz recordings, music referred to as contemporary jazz does not usually share those sensibilities, nor is the term generally used to describe music centered around hard bop or the avant-garde. Instead, instrumental contemporary jazz is usually informed by some combination of a) fusion -- often slickly produced, with an emphasis on rock and funk rhythms; b) pop-jazz, with its almost exclusive concentration on memorable melodies; c) smooth jazz, with its primary goal of creating pleasant, mellow textures; and d) crossover jazz and contemporary funk, with their blend of polished production and R&B influences. Not all contemporary jazz artists completely discard improvisation and challenging experimentation, but by and large, most instrumentalists emphasize shiny production, melody, and accessibility. In the realm of vocal jazz, artists may or may not possess an improvisational flair, but in most cases, their recordings attempt to evoke an aura of stylish sophistication, sometimes drawing upon pop and R&B in addition to jazz.

Contemporary Jazz Artists Highlights

George Benson
George Benson
Keith Jarrett
Keith Jarrett
John Scofield
John Scofield
Larry Carlton
Larry Carlton
James Carter
James Carter
Diana Krall
Diana Krall

More Contemporary Jazz Artists

Contemporary Jazz Album Highlights

The Greatest Hits of All
George Benson
The Greatest Hits of All
Places
Brad Mehldau
Places
The Best of David Sanborn
David Sanborn
The Best of David Sanborn
Black Butterfly
Russell Malone
Black Butterfly
In Carterian Fashion
James Carter
In Carterian Fashion
All for You (A Dedication to the Nat King Cole Trio)
Diana Krall
All for You (A Dedication ...

More Contemporary Jazz Albums

Contemporary Jazz Song Highlights

Title/Composer Performer Stream
I Can't Stand the Rain Cassandra Wilson
Loud Jazz John Scofield
It Ain't Necessarily So Marcus Roberts
What You Won't Do for Love Bobby Caldwell
Give Me the Night George Benson
Under Northern Lights Keiko Matsui
Sweet Georgia Peach Russell Malone
Cast Your Fate to the Wind David Benoit
Angst Brad Mehldau
Sleepwalk Larry Carlton

More Contemporary Jazz Songs

Other Styles in Contemporary Jazz