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Music

The Best Jazz Composers of All Time 

Ranker Music
Updated March 28, 2020 3k votes 475 voters 8k views

List Rules Vote up who you think are the greatest Jazz composers of all time

These are the greatest Jazz composers ranked from best to worst by Jazz fans all over the globe. Much like Jazz itself, the backgrounds of the musicians on this list are extremely diverse. Jazz is about what's between the notes, and when it comes to looking at the best Jazz composers of all time, that's just where you have to look to find them. Between the notes. It goes without saying that Jazz will always be "cool." A few of the most famous Jazz composers have written music that is still popular today. Actually, some of the best Jazz music has burst onto the scene in the last few years alone.

What are some of the names you will find on this best Jazz composers list? “I Got It Bad (and That Ain't Good)” and “Don't Get Around Much Anymore” are just two famous Jazz standards with music by Duke Ellington. He regularly wrote songs so they could be performed by his Jazz orchestra. Charlie Parker is another talented composer of Jazz music.

Jazz composer Herbie Hancock is most famous for writing free-style Jazz, but he also includes elements of Funk and Pop into his catchy tunes. Other famous musicians who are featured on this top Jazz composers list include Dizzy Gillespie, Ornette Coleman and Thelonius Monk.

Who do you think is the best Jazz composer? Make sure to give your picks a thumbs up!
list ordered by
1
Duke Ellington is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
2
Miles Davis is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
3
Thelonious Monk is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
4
Charles Mingus is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
5
John Coltrane is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
6
Herbie Hancock is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
7
Wayne Shorter is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
8
Louis Armstrong is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
9
Dave Brubeck is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
10
Dizzy Gillespie is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
11
Bill Evans is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
12
Charlie Parker is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
13
Fats Waller is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
14
Chick Corea is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
15
Ornette Coleman is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
16
Count Basie is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
17
Horace Silver is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
18
Django Reinhardt is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
19
Lionel Hampton is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
20
Billy Strayhorn is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
21
Sonny Rollins is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
22
Eric Dolphy is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
23
Pat Metheny is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
24
Jelly Roll Morton is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time
25
Carla Bley is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Jazz Composers of All Time