Charles Lloyd has topped the 71st annual DownBeat Critics Poll, winning two main categories including artist of the year.
The 85-year-old is the oldest to be named artist of the year by the magazine’s critics. He first won the title in 1967. This year, Lloyd was also given the JJA Jazz Awards’ lifetime achievement award, along with the title of tenor saxophonist of the year. He was named an NEA Jazz Master in 2015.
Terri Lyne Carrington came in second in voting for artist of the year. Meanwhile, she was deemed the year’s best drummer, and her Social Science ensemble was named best jazz group. It’s the latest of many accolades for Carrington, who recently won another Grammy Award for her recording New Standards, Vol. 1.
Among the other major winners of this year’s DownBeat Critics Poll are Immanuel Wilkins, Mary Halvorson, Maria Schneider, Shemekia Copeland, Samara Joy, and Lakecia Benjamin, who each won multiple categories.
Mary Halvorson’s Amaryllis & Belladonna was named album of the year by the magazine’s critics.
Samara Joy, fresh from winning best new artist at the Grammys, was named DownBeat’s rising star artist. The Immanuel Wilkins Quartet was named their rising star group.
This year’s rising stars also include vocalists Samara Joy and Michael Mayo; saxophonists Alexa Tarantino, Sharel Cassity, Isaiah Collier and Grace Kelly; trumpeter Etienne Charles; trombonist Natalie Cressman; clarinetist Chris Byars; pianist Leo Genovese; flautist Lakecia Benjamin; guitarist Nir Felder; organist Kit Downes; bassist Matt Brewer; and drummer Obed Calvaire.
Alice Coltrane, Mario Bauzá and Red Norvo were voted into the DownBeat Hall of Fame.
Among the other winners are trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire; vocalists Cécile McLorin Salvant and Kurt Elling; trombonist Michael Dease; saxophonists Jane Ira Bloom, Immanuel Wilkins and Charles Lloyd; clarinetist Anat Cohen; flautist Nicole Mitchell; pianist Kenny Barron; keyboardist Herbie Hancock; organist Joey DeFrancesco (who passed last August); guitarist Mary Halvorson; bassists Christian McBride and Marcus Miller; violinist Regina Carter; vibraphonist Joel Ross; and harpist Brandee Younger.
The magazine’s critics also voted Ahmad Jamal’s Emerald City Nights: Live at the Penthouse as the year’s top historical album.
The full list is available at downbeat.com.