1. Miles Davis
No Blues

"This was the first jazz CD my father bought me, and I hated it . . . until my ears matured."

2. Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald
Best of . . .
"Music should always feel like this. They lived and breathed it."

3. James Brown
Star Time (box set)
"Gut-bucket soul and feel-good party music. Got me dancin’ now."

4. Outkast
"Full of hip-hop classics and great innovative vision—not willing to sacrifice music for money."

5. Stevie Wonder
Songs in the Key of Life
"The title says it all. It’s one of the most harmonious albums of all time."


Photograph: (Wilkes) Anna Knott