Dan Wilson – 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 Dan Wilson 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) Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald – Ella and Louis Again: I was given this album by a friend in high school, and I was instantly captivated by the repertoire. Every tune is a masterpiece. The interplay between Ella and Louis is legendary. I was also struck by how Oscar Peterson and Herb Ellis worked together to comp.

2) Billy Hart – Oshumare: I think album is out of print now, but it remains a gemstone in my collection. Billy Hart is in top form, and each band member serves the music masterfully. Anyone that knows me knows that I’m a diehard Kenny Kirkland and Dave Holland fan, so to hear them on the same record is like Christmastime for me.

3) Kenny Garrett – Songbook: This is one album where I can’t skip any tracks. I have to listen to it all the way through. The whole album is a statement. Kenny Garrett has the perfect balance between raw intensity and melodic lyricism. His bandmates (Tain, Kenny Kirkland, Nat Reeves) aren’t too shabby on this record either.

4) Dave Holland – Extensions: As mentioned before, I’m a die-hard Dave Holland fan. I like pretty much anything he’s been a part of musically. What really knocked me out on this record was Kevin Eubanks. I think he gets left out of the conversation when people talk about “modern” guitarists. He puts on a clinic on this album. He’s able to go in any musical direction.

5) Jimmy Smith and Wes Montgomery – The Dynamic Duo: This is where it all began for me. This album made me want to become a jazz musician. I remember being in my uncle’s basement, and he said, “Dan Boy, I want you to hear something.” The needle went on the record, and I heard “ Down By The Riverside.” I haven’t been the same since.

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About Lyle Robinson 353 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. Love it Dan. I used to have the Dave Holland and need to revisit that. I’m not aware of the Billy Hart or Kirkland but I will be.

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