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Best Jazz Albums of 1992

Discover the Best of Jazz selection for 1992 with our ten best jazz albums released that year. Once again, the albums are listed in no particular order: all are amazing in their own ways. At the end of the article, you will also find a playlist with a track to represent each of those ten albums, plus ten extra, for more than 200 minutes of breath-taking music.

Best Jazz 1992

The 10 Best Jazz Albums of 1992

Irène Schweizer Piano Solo Vol 1 & 2

Irène Schweizer

Piano Solo Vol. 1 & 2
(Intakt Records)

“Documenting the current work of leading piano-player of Europe, these two CDs – Piano Solo Vol 1 and Piano Solo Vol 2 – show us Irène Schweizer’s strong individual style, influenced by such varying techniques as ragtime, turn of the century ‘salon’ music of the new music of Monk or Cecil Taylor. A series of shorter and longer ‘piano pieces’, which were very sharply defined. A microcosm, created with imagination tightly restrained by formal discipline; two records that achieve the impression of great ease through high concentration.”
–Intakt Records

Irene Schweizer: piano
Released 1992

Anthony Braxton Willisau

Anthony Braxton

Willisau (Quartet) 1991
(hat ART)

This is a unique 4 CD box set released by the Swiss label hat ART. Discs 1 and 2 were recorded on June 4 and 5, 1991, in Willisau, Switzerland. Discs 3 and 4 were recorded live on June 2, 1991, at Mohren, Willisau.

“With this band, he never had to assert himself as a leader because they could instinctively follow his cues. Since that time, he has had to assert himself more and more. And while the music he’s writing has every bit of the wonder, awe, and irritation of his earlier work, it has never been played with this virtuosity”
–Thom Jurek, Allmusic

Anthony Braxton: sopranino saxophone, alto saxophone, clarinet, flute; Marilyn Crispell: piano; Mark Dresser: bass; Gerry Hemingway: drums, marimba
Released 1992

Don Byron Tuskegee Experiments

Don Byron

Tuskegee Experiments

“Taking its title from experiments conducted on Black American men at Alabama’s Tuskegee Institute, Don Byron’s first solo recording features seven original jazz compositions, an Ellington arrangement, and a transcription of a Schumann song. With a core trio consisting of guitarist Bill Frisell, bassist Lonnie Plaxico, and drummer Ralph Peterson, Byron offers a swinging, lyrical and totally individual representation of the jazz clarinet. The arc of the recording builds with the addition of players and intensity, climaxing with the title track and poetry by the Detroit-based writer Sadiq.”

Don Byron: clarinet, bass clarinet; Greta Buck: violin; Bill Frisell: guitar; Joe Berkovitz: piano; Edsel Gomez: piano; Richie Schwarz: marimba; Kenny Davis, Lonnie Plaxico, Reggie Workman: bass; Pheeroan akLaff, Ralph Peterson: drums
Released 1992

Best Jazz 1992 - Joe Lovano From The Soul

Joe Lovano

From The Soul
(Blue Note)

“This was the first recording on my Blue Note contract with an incredible group.
Michel Petrucianni was a real virtuoso and a total natural. We met on my first European tour with Paul Motian, in 1981, when Michel was playing with Charlies Lloyd. We played together at different times throughout the 80s, which led to this session.
I’d played a little with Dave, in a trio with Karl Berger, and he was really my first choice for the date. Blackwell and I were working together a lot during this period.
The repertoire is mixed, standards, a Coltrane classic, and my own tunes, with one of Judi’s, Left Behind, written for my dad, who had just passed. Evolution comes from the way the music evolves when we improvise, exploring different harmonics, which was an evolution for me.
There was an amazing rapport at this session and the music reflects it.”

Joe Lovano

Joe Lovano: tenor, alto, soprano saxophones; Michel Petrucciani: piano; Dave Holland: bass; Ed Blackwell: drums
Released 1992

Charles Gayle Repent

Charles Gayle

(Knitting Factory Works)

Both tracks were recorded at the Knitting Factory in New York City, on January 13 and Mars 2, 1992. This is a cathartic, out-playing, free jazz masterpiece.

“When you live on the street, it isn’t like you can play at a street corner and then pack up and go home. There’s something else involved, and I need that. I miss that. I might follow a sound, but not to play with it: because it was there and part of that situation. It’s a different thing entirely.”
Charles Gayle

Charles Gayle: tenor saxophone; David Pleasant: drums; Hilliard Greene: bass (1); F. Vattel Cherry: bass (2)
Released 1992

Bheki Mseleku Meditations

Bheki Mseleku


In 1992, Mseleku made his debut album, Celebration, followed by the recording of this so very reflective and beautiful Meditations, live at that year’s Bath International Music Festival.

Bheki Mseleku: piano, vocals
Released 1992

Donald Harrison Jr With Dr John Indian Blues

Donald Harrison Jr. With Dr. John

Indian Blues

“On his second solo album, Harrison explores his New Orleans roots and has some fun in the process. With help from Dr. John and the Guardians of the Flame (led by Donald Harrison, Sr.), plus the excellent jazz musicianship of Cyrus Chestnut on piano and Carl Allen on drums, Indian Blues combines the neo-swing style Harrison is known for with Mardi Gras Indian music and funky New Orleans R&B.”
–Anthony Clark

Donald Harrison Jr.: alto, tenor saxophone, tambourine, backing vocals; Phil Bowler: bass, backing vocals; Howard ‘Smiley’ Ricks: congas, tambourine, percussion, backing vocals; Carl Allen: drums, bass drum, backing vocals; Donald Harrison Sr.: lead vocals; Dr. John: piano, lead vocal; Cyrus Chestnut: piano, backing vocals; Bruce Cox: tambourine, backing vocals
Released 1992

Randy Weston The Spirits Of Our Ancestors

Randy Weston

The Spirits Of Our Ancestors
(Verve Records)

Randy Weston wanted to capture the authentic, traditional sounds and rhythms of the Gnawa. He had lived with and learned from the masters of this traditional Moroccan group for more than 20 years. resulting in his being strongly influenced, as a composer, by the music of the Gnawa.” Discover the entire story behind The Spirits Of Our Ancestors here.

Randy Weston: piano; Idrees Sulieman, Dizzy Gillespie (9): trumpet; Benny Powell: trombone; Talib Kibwe: flute, alt sax; Billy Harper, Dewey Redman, Pharoah Sanders: tenor sax; Alex Blake, Jamil Nasser: bass; Idris Muhammad: drums; Azzedin Weston, Big Black, Yassir Chadly: percussion
Released 1992

Rabih Abou-Khalil Blue Camel

Rabih Abou-Khalil

Blue Camel
(Enja Records)

Blue Camel, by the Lebanese oud player and composer Rabih Abou-Khalil, is a wonderful fusion of traditional Arabic music with jazz.

Rabih Abou-Khalil: oud; Kenny Wheeler: flugelhorn, trumpet; Charlie Mariano: alto saxophone; Steve Swallow: bass; Ramesh Shotham: South Indian drums, percussion; Milton Cardona: congas; Nabil Khaiat: frame drums
Released 1992

Best Jazz 1992 - Byard Lancaster My Pure Joy

Byard Lancaster

My Pure Joy
(Black Fire)

“I dedicate this album to all African Americans in the USA. To the youth, I ask ‘What does it profit a man to gain the whole world and lose his soul?’”
–Byard Lancaster

Byard Lancaster: flutes, saxophones, piano; Leonard Hubbard: bass; Keno Speller: congas; Henry Dixon: congas, bells; Eric Lewis: djembe, berimbau; Baba Crowder, Chuck Lee, Webb Thomas: drums; Tunde Kuboye: drums [African]; Warren Wimberly: guitar; Jeff Lee Johnson: guitar, bass; Alfie Pollitt: keyboards; Eddie Green: piano; Reverend Joe Craddock: vocals.
Released 1992

Albums List

  • Irène SchweizerPiano Solo Vol. 1 & 2 (Intakt Records)
  • Anthony BraxtonWillisau (Quartet) 1991 (hat ART)
  • Don ByronTuskegee Experiments (Nonesuch)
  • Joe LovanoFrom The Soul (Blue Note)
  • Charles GayleRepent (Knitting Factory Works)
  • Bheki MselekuMeditations (Samadhi)
  • Donald Harrison Jr. With Dr. JohnIndian Blues (Candid)
  • Randy WestonThe Spirits Of Our Ancestors (Verve Records)
  • Rabih Abou-KhalilBlue Camel (Enja Records)
  • Byard LancasterMy Pure Joy (Black Fire)

The 1990s

Discover all the other 1990s jazz selections: 1990199119931994 – 1995 – 1996 – 1997 – 1998 –1999

Playlist “Best Jazz 1992”

Here is a link to the Spotify Playlist Best Jazz 1992, with a track for each album listed above plus 10 tracks from 10 other amazing 1992 jazz albums, including Terence Blanchard, Miles Davis, Anouar Brahem, and more.

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