Jim Josselyn – 5 Desert Island Album Picks

Regardless if you’re a beginning student of Jazz Guitar or an established player, we all have at least five albums that we cannot be without! With that said, Jazz Guitar Life has asked Jazz Guitarist Jim Josselyn what his five would be (assuming that he knew before hand that he was going to be stuck on a desert island and that said island had electricity and a full component stereo system) 🙂


1) Wes Montgomery – Smokin’ At The Half Note: To me this album is what Wes did best, in abundance, live. It’s a perfect jazz record, it’s a perfect guitar record and the solos on No Blues and If You Could See Me Now are just beyond belief, with Four On Six, Unit 7 and What’s New? just simply burning as well. A moment in time captured with the great Wynton Kelly, Paul Chambers and Jimmy Cobb.

2) Pat Martino – We’ll Be Together Again: – When I told Pat years ago if I had to pick one of his albums as a favorite this would be it, he smiled and said “That recording is a fine glass of cognac”. I think Pat is the greatest writer among the great jazz guitarists, and side A of this record is Exhibit A in that argument. The music, a duet with the great Gil Goldstein on Fender Rhodes, is soulful and smart, reflective and challenging and satisfying on so many levels. Side B, complete with some of the most beautiful jazz ballads is delightful as well.

3) Emily RemlerCatwalk: Another great guitar record of entirely original compositions, this time with a mostly Latin flavor. Emily’s music was also deep and cerebral and grooved hard. Her influences are the same as mine, and she wears them well, while having her own sound and style. I’ve listened to these unique and amazing songs over, and over and over again and they send me every time. 

4) Ted Dunbar – Gentle Time Alone: In 1991 my teacher, mentor and friend, the late, great Ted Dunbar recorded this album of nine stunning original compositions with people he loved, Mickey Tucker, Ray Drummond, David Jones and Anita Taylor. The care they took with this incredible collection of tunes shines through the entire album. This is heady, intelligent cerebral music that swings with joy, depth and humor. The kind of music I aspire to create. How about, just for fun, Giant Steps substitutions on Rhythm changes, in Db?

5) Jimmy and Doug Raney – Stolen Moments:
This album is simply pure jazz guitar joy – a father and son leading a guitar band with sublime accompaniment from bassist Michael Moore and drummer Billy Hart. Jimmy’s a bit more old school and Doug is a bit more modern, but they play together on this wonderful album. Interplay, melodicism, touch, feel, Bach like soloing at the same time, this music is a lesson in good taste and the selections are terrific – I Should Care, How My Heart Sings, the title track and two really great Jimmy Raney originals. Love this.

Please consider spreading the word about Jim and Jazz Guitar Life by sharing this article amongst your social media pals and please feel free to leave a comment. We’d love to hear from you 🙂

About Lyle Robinson 350 Articles
Lyle Robinson is the owner/creator/publisher and editor of Jazz Guitar Life, an online magazine dedicated to the Jazz Guitar and its community of fine players worldwide.


  1. Great picks! I will check out Ted Dunbar! Love the Rainey album. Please consider Bern Nix Alarms & Excursions. Thank you, Ray Bally

    • Hi Ray and thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment 🙂

      I’ll mention to Jim that you left a comment and we’ll take it from there.

      Take care and all the best.

      Lyle – Jazz Guitar Life

  2. Hello! I’m at work surfing around your blog and just wanted to say I love reading Jazz Guitar Life. I am look forward to reading all your posts! Carry on the fantastic

    • Hi Alvin and thank you so much for the wonderfully kind words regarding Jazz Guitar Life. It is truly appreciated 🙂

      Take care and all the best.

      Lyle – Jazz Guitar Life

  3. Just wanted to say thanks for these desert island picks. I am enjoying them very much and like to see what others are listening to. Please continue this series and thanks for a great website.


        • Hi Az and yeah, Emily is a wonderful player to listen to. Rory is great as well but of course, they both come from different musical worlds. That being said, there’s no denying talent no matter what music one plays 🙂

          Thanks for dropping by and take care.

          Lyle – Jazz Guitar Life

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