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100 Greatest Saxophonists

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Criteria: - These musicians were chosen for their originality, versatility, impact & influence within the genre. For their innovations & the technical ability for improvisation & musical expression in addition to their compositional skill & creative inspiration.

Newly added names are in Red

Edited By: Rick Varner
Last Updated: 03-18-2014

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100 Greatest Saxophonists
  1. Charlie Parker
  2. John Coltrane
  3. Lester Young
  4. Coleman Hawkins
  5. Sonny Rollins
  6. Eric Dolphy
  7. Cannonball Adderley
  8. Wayne Shorter
  9. Stanley Turrentine
10. Paul Desmond
11. Dexter Gordon
12. Joe Henderson
13. Benny Carter
14. Gerry Mulligan
15. Stan Getz
16. Ornette Coleman
17. Sidney Bechet
18. Rahsaan Roland Kirk
19. Johnny Hodges
20. Grover Washington Jr.
21. Don Byas
22. Art Pepper
23. Pharoah Sanders
24. Michael Brecker
25. King Curtis
26. Jackie McLean
27. Hank Mobley
28. David Sanborn
29. Gato Barbieri
30. Dewey Redman
31. Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson
32. Joe Lovano
33. Sonny Stitt
34. Illinois Jacquet
35. Tom Saviano
36. Albert Ayler
37. Karl Denson
38. Junior Walker
39. David "Fathead" Newman
40. Ernie Watts
41. Ben Webster
42. Johnny Griffin
43. Kenny Garrett
44. Bob Berg
45. Phil Woods
46. Ronnie Laws
47. Tom Scott
48. Lucky Thompson
49. Sam "The Man" Taylor
50. Booker Ervin
51. Yusef Lateef
52. Eddie Harris
53. Gene Ammons
54. Richard Elliott
55. Dave Koz
56. Kirk Whalum
57. Joshua Redman
58. Wilton Felder
59. Lee Konitz
60. Brandon Fields
61. Greg Osby
62. John Surman
63. Arnett Cobb
64. Pepper Adams
65. Pete Christlieb
66. Sonny Fortune
67. Clarence Clemons
68. Plas Johnson
69. Harold Land
70. Gerald Albright
71. Bud Shank
72. Chris Potter
73. Lou Donaldson
74. Eric Marienthal
75. Alvin 'Red' Tyler
76. Bobby Keys
77. Sonny Simmons
78. Nat Simpkins
79. Archie Shepp
80. Willis Jackson
81. Maxwell Davis
82. Joe Houston
83. Louis Jordan
84. John Zorn
85. Lee Allen
86. Hank Crawford
87. David Sanchez
88. Earl Bostic
89. George Coleman
90. Dave Liebman
91. Lenny Pickett
92. Big Jay McNeely
93. John Gilmore
94. Red Prysock
95. "Daddy" Gene Barge
96. Zoot Sims
97. Branford Marsalis
98. Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis
99. Jimmy Forrest
100. Sam Rivers
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Some listening recommendations:
More Great Saxophonists:
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"Giant Steps" - John Coltrane
"Bird's Best Bop On Verve" - Charlie Parker
"Two Blocks From The Edge" - Michael Brecker
"Upfront" - David Sanborn
"Gratitude" - Chris Potter
"Mister Magic" - Grover Washington Jr.
"Crossings" - Tom Saviano
"Three Women" - Ornette Coleman
"The Bridge" - Sonny Rollins
"Speak No Evil" - Wayne Shorter
Harold Ashby
Jerry Bergonzi
Jay Beckenstein
Anthony Braxton
"Hurricane" Hank Carter
Richie Cole
Kenny G
Jan Garbarek
Paul Gonsalves
Herb Hardesty
Vincent Herring
Warren Hill
Jeff Kashiwa
John Klemmer
Bob Malach
Steve Marcus
Bennie Maupin
Lenny Niehaus
Walt Parazaider
Maceo Parker
Dick Parry
Alto Reed
Willie Smith
James Spaulding
Buddy Tate
Paul Taylor
Mark Turner
Kim Waters
Dave Woodford
John Coltrane Charlie Parker Lester Young Sonny Rollins Cannonball Adderley
John Coltrane Charlie Parker Lester Young Sonny Rollins Cannonball Adderley
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Disclaimer: There is nothing 'Official' about these lists. They are compiled by the 'editor' using the
stated criteria, and revised considering the competent suggestions of visitors to this website only.

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