Alex Stephenson

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Last Active 07-26-19 7:57 pm
Joined 04-17-17

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08.08.19 Long Shot's Top 75 Albums of 196407.03.19 Sam Cooke -- RANKED
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04.12.19 Long Shot's Top 50 Albums of 195903.26.19 Long Shot's Top 50 Albums of 1958
03.20.19 Billie Holiday -- RANKED03.17.19 Long Shot's Top 40 Albums of 1957
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02.25.19 Long Shot's Top 15 Albums of 195502.24.19 Long Shot's Top 10 Albums From Pre-1953
02.24.19 Long Shot's Top 15 Albums of 195402.22.19 Long Shot's Top 10 Albums of 1953
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Long Shot's Top 15 Albums of 1955

Officially going to be caught up after this list, so you won't have to worry about me saturating the site with 4 lists in 3 days again anytime soon. Anyways, you'll notice if you're paying any attention to the singles charts of the era that rockabilly and early rock-'n' roll is on the rise, but that sort of music hasn't really translated well to the LP format yet. It will be another year before Elvis and his disciples begin making any sort of impact on these rankings. Until then, keep on jazzin', everybody.
1Frank Sinatra
In The Wee Small Hours


Perhaps the only album in existence that makes you want to kill yourself while also ensuring that you'll be lulled to sleep before you can do anything about it.

Track pick: "I Get Along Without You Very Well"
2Bing Crosby
Merry Christmas


A couple of these songs are too kitschy even for a die-hard Christmas fan like me, but most of the time, this record is just spewing out holiday staple after holiday staple.

Track pick: "It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas"
3Clifford Brown and Max Roach
Brown and Roach Incorporated


Much of the same greatness that drove the self-titled effort is present here, if perhaps in a slightly less fresh form. Brown and Roach are still kings of their respective crafts, but you knew that already.

Track pick: "Sweet Clifford"
4Kenny Dorham


Dorham takes the normal Art Blakey ensemble and works them through a swath of Latin-flavored arrangements that are executed as well as you'd expect from a Blakey ensemble.

Track pick: "Afrodisia"
5Erroll Garner


Checking back in with Garner, he's still got it in spades, and once again piano-based jazz is searching for a player not named Monk who can capture this type of excellence.

Track pick: "You Are My Sunshine"
6Julie London
Julie Is Her Name


One of the better white female crooners of her day, and perhaps one of the better female crooners in general.

Track pick: "Cry Me a River"
7The Four Freshmen
Four Freshmen and 5 Trombones


I hear a young chap named Brian Wilson took extreme inspiration from these fellows back in the day. Wonder what he's up to these days.

Track pick: "Angel Eyes"
8Thelonious Monk
Thelonious Monk Plays Duke Ellington


Pretty much as safely enjoyable as one would anticipate.

Track pick: "Caravan"
9Helen Merrill
Helen Merrill


Another white female crooner who can sing pretty damn well.

Track pick: "Don't Explain"
10Gene Krupa And Buddy Rich
Krupa And Rich


Two of the best drummers in jazz face off in a battle royale, where only one emerges as the superior player. (Hint: it's Rich.)

Track pick: "Bernie's Tune"
11Jay Jay Johnson Sextet
The Eminent Jay Jay Johnson, Vol. 2


Track pick: "Too Marvelous for Words"
12Tony Fruscella
Tony Fruscella


Track pick: "Muy"
13Stan Getz and Lionel Hampton
Hamp and Getz


Track pick: "Cherokee"
14Miles Davis
Blue Moods


Track pick: "Nature Boy"
15Charles Mingus and John LaPorta
Jazzical Moods, Vol. 1


Track pick: "What Is This Thing Called Love"
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