So this is my 2nd full year of retreat and reprieve after 18 consecutive years of reviewing via a variety of websites over the decades. Continuing to be lean on how many reviews I committed to has resulted in being totally caught up as I enter 2019 as well as a very concise and strong Top Ten. In fact I was almost tempted to pick a tie for the top 2 but that would be counter culture to our American way of life.
So after being torn on my decision, 2018 ended in a photo finish with long time delightful pianist Paul Cardall’s and his sensational Christmas offering taking the number 1 honor. With the production assistance of Jim Daneker, that makes two consecutive years of Mr. Daneker winning or being associated with the top pick of the year. Quite impressive!!!
I would especially like to recognize Jennifer Thomas and Contante & Sonante who also released spectacular records. But also all the artists and labels, thank you for willing to risk a critique and also spend part of your promotional budget by investing in a review. This will always be considered an honor and a privilege even as I close in on 2 decades of reviewing.