Jazz Journalists Association Announces Nominees for 16th Annual JJA Jazz Awards

Finalist nominees for the 16th annual Jazz Awards presented by the Jazz Journalists Association have been announced at JJAJazzAwards.org – the nominations demonstrate the rich diversity of music which may have been overlooked by mainstream media and other music industry-generated Awards programs.

Iconic veteran instrumentalists including Sonny Rollins, Keith Jarrett, Phil Woods Lee Konitz, Gary Burton, Ron Carter, Roy Haynes, Jack DeJohnette, Pat Metheny and John Scofield are among the nominees who will vie for votes with newly emerged talents such as trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire, pianist Craig Taborn, tenor saxophonist J.D. Allen, guitarist Mary Halvorson, bassist Esperanza Spalding, vibist Warren Wolf and drummer Eric Harland in some of the 40 categories celebrating excellence in jazz and jazz journalism. Winners of the Jazz Awards will be selected from the nearly 200 nominees through voting by the JJA's international membership of writers, photographers, broadcasters and new media producers professionally involved with jazz. Awards are for accomplishments and productions from calendar year 2011, except in two categories for Lifetime Achievement.

The JJA Jazz Awards for journalists themselves recognize a distinguished field. Lifetime Achievement in Jazz Journalism nominees are Amiri Baraka, Stanley Crouch, Will Friedwald, Willard Jenkins and Neil Tesser – authors of books, articles and record liner notes who have doubled as broadcasters, educators and performers. Separate honors will be conferred for writing, broadcasting, photograph, a Photo of the Year and Short Form Jazz News Video.

The 2012 JJA Jazz Awards' nominees are being announced on Jazz Day (so designated by the U.S. Council of Mayors) which the JJA, a non-profit professional association, is also marking with the launch of an international "Blogathon" based on the theme of "jazz in my community." Videos, photos and text reports from jazz scenes in Kuwait, Scandinavia and Italy, Philadelphia, Indianapolis, Minneapolis- St. Paul, Cambridge MA and Spartanburg SC scenes are already posted. More will be added throughout the month of April.

Winners of the 2012 JJA Jazz Awards will be announced during the month of June, leading up to announcement of Lifetime Achievement Awards winners, Musician of the Year, Record of the Year, Male and Female Jazz Vocalists of the Year at a cocktail party to be held at the Blue Note Jazz Club, New York City, on June 20, 4 to 6 pm. Buy tickets here.