music The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time

9.4k votes 238k views 190 items Embed
Combining elements of funk, R&B, funk, rock, pop, and yes, jazz - smooth jazz was wildly popular as a commercial subgenre of jazz. Smooth jazz artists also could be found adult contemporary radio and is called smooth because of its downtempo melody that carries the song. First emerging in the 1960s, smooth jazz works well as background music and wasn't necessarily as complex or innovative as traditional jazz music. Nevertheless, top jazz artists rose to prominence in the late 1980s before peaking in the 1990s and early 2000s. Though smooth, contemporary jazz isn't as big as it once was, it's impact can't be disputed and many famous jazz artists are considered to be some of the best musicians of modern time. 

So, who are the best smooth jazz artists of all time? Any list of smooth jazz musicians has to include names like Anita Baker, Dave Koz, Chris Botti, Al Jarreau and Norah Jones. These smooth jazz artists are among the most well known names in the genre and with good reason. Their smooth songs, accomplishments, and awards speak for themselves. It's likely when you think of contemporary jazz and smooth jazz, these are the top artists that come to mind.

That said, it's up to you to determine what are the best smooth jazz artists. If you're familiar with smooth jazz, please feel free to vote on this list of smooth jazz artists. If you notice new artists that are missing from this list, feel free to add them. This list answers the questions "who are the best smooth jazz bands of all time?" and "who is the greatest smooth jazz musician ever?" If you know enough about the genre, please vote based on the quality of the band's music instead of just voting for the most popular smooth jazz bands that you might've heard of. 

1
+ - 222 41
Brian Culbertson is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Brian Culbertson Smooth jazz, Funk

The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time The Best Opening Act You've Ever Seen

2
+ - 235 46
Fourplay is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Fourplay Smooth jazz, Jazz

3
+ - 168 26
Peter White is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Peter White Smooth jazz, Jazz fusion Alternative rock

4
+ - 212 39
Dave Koz is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Dave Koz Adult contemporary music, Smooth jazz Jazz

5
+ - 383 98
Paul Hardcastle is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Paul Hardcastle Synthpop, New Wave Electro

6
+ - 177 29
David Sanborn is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
David Sanborn Pop music, Rock music Smooth jazz

7
+ - 193 34
The Rippingtons is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
The Rippingtons Smooth jazz, Jazz fusion Jazz

8
+ - 223 45
Earl Klugh is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Earl Klugh Crossover jazz, Smooth jazz Jazz fusion

9
+ - 91 9
Boney James is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time

10
+ - 195 39
Sade Adu is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time

11
+ - 176 33
Bob James is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Bob James Crossover jazz, Sophisti-pop Smooth jazz

12
+ - 193 39
Norman Brown is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Norman Brown Smooth jazz, Jazz fusion

13
+ - 159 29
Spyro Gyra is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Spyro Gyra Smooth jazz, Jazz fusion Jazz

14
+ - 141 24
Lee Ritenour is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Lee Ritenour Jazz-funk, Pop music Sophisti-pop

15
+ - 128 21
David Benoit is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
David Benoit Smooth jazz, Jazz fusion Easy listening

The Best K-pop Dancers of All Time Catchiest Viral Internet Songs of All Time

16
+ - 106 15
Larry Carlton is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Larry Carlton Pop music, Rock music Smooth jazz

17
+ - 148 31
Anita Baker is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Anita Baker Adult contemporary music, Quiet storm Smooth jazz

18
+ - 141 29
Kirk Whalum is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Kirk Whalum Christian music, Pop music Smooth jazz

19
+ - 161 38
Earth, Wind & Fire is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Earth, Wind & Fire Disco, Rock music Black metal

20
+ - 111 19
Jeff Lorber is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Jeff Lorber Crossover jazz, Sophisti-pop Smooth jazz

21
+ - 159 41
Marc Antoine is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Marc Antoine Smooth jazz, Jazz fusion Latin jazz

22
+ - 123 25
Acoustic Alchemy is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Acoustic Alchemy New Age music, Smooth jazz Instrumental

23
+ - 141 34
Miles Davis is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Miles Davis Jazz rap, Avant-garde jazz Jazz-funk

24
+ - 123 27
Chris Botti is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Chris Botti Smooth jazz, Jazz

25
+ - 103 21
Euge Groove is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Euge Groove Smooth jazz

26
+ - 100 20
Incognito is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Incognito Nu jazz, Jazz-funk Pop music

27
+ - 104 23
Hiroshima is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Hiroshima Smooth jazz, Jazz fusion Jazz

28
+ - 87 19
Pieces of a Dream is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Pieces of a Dream Smooth jazz, Jazz fusion Rhythm and blues

29
+ - 34 3
Al Jarreau is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Al Jarreau Pop music, Rhythm and blues Jazz

Rock Stars Who Died at Age 29 Things You Should Stop Apologizing For

30
+ - 86 21
Bobby Caldwell is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Bobby Caldwell Blue-eyed soul, Quiet storm Smooth jazz

31
+ - 94 27
Keiko Matsui is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Keiko Matsui New Age music, Smooth jazz Jazz fusion

32
+ - 82 22
Gregg Karukas is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Gregg Karukas Smooth jazz

33
+ - 76 19
Michael Franks is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Michael Franks Smooth jazz

34
+ - 77 20
Yellowjackets is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Yellowjackets Smooth jazz, Jazz fusion Jazz

35
+ - 68 15
Chuck Mangione is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Chuck Mangione Smooth jazz, Jazz

36
+ - 98 33
Norah Jones is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Norah Jones Vocal jazz, Jazz blues Jazz fusion

37
+ - 138 57
Kenny G is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Kenny G Adult contemporary music, Smooth jazz

38
+ - 60 11
Walter Beasley is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Walter Beasley Smooth jazz

39
+ - 51 8
Ronny Jordan is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Ronny Jordan Crossover jazz, Jazz-funk Acid jazz

40
+ - 64 16
Tower of Power is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Tower of Power Jazz-funk, Smooth jazz Rhythm and blues

41
+ - 84 30
Luther Vandross is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Luther Vandross Hip hop music, Adult contemporary music Contemporary R&B

42
+ - 64 18
Fattburger is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Fattburger Jazz-funk, Smooth jazz Jazz fusion

43
+ - 69 22
Candy Dulfer is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Candy Dulfer Nu jazz, Smooth jazz Funk

The Greatest Jazz Trombonists of All Time The Best Almond Milk Brands

44
+ - 57 15
Chick Corea is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Chick Corea Kozmigroov, Fusion Avant-garde jazz

45
+ - 28 3
Chuck Loeb is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time

46
+ - 52 12
Sérgio Mendes is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Sérgio Mendes Adult contemporary music, Disco Lounge music

47
+ - 23 2
Rick Braun is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Rick Braun Smooth jazz, Jazz fusion

48
+ - 27 3
Pat Metheny Group is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Pat Metheny Group Crossover jazz, World music Jazz fusion

49
+ - 56 17
Gato Barbieri is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time
Gato Barbieri Smooth jazz, Latin jazz Jazz

50
+ - 22 2
Richard Elliot is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Smooth Jazz Bands and Artists of All Time