Melody Maker Readers Poll (1970)...
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Melody Maker Readers Poll (1970)...
For 74 years the "Melody Maker" was the weekly 'trade paper' for the dance band and jazz musician as well as all those interested in the modern music scene. One of it's continuing features and talking points were the annual Readers Polls where readers voted under different categories for individual musicians, singers, big bands and a host of other categories.
The annual jazz polls were a major event in the jazz world but were also an important historical record of the state of British jazz through the years and preserve some of the historical perspective on British Jazz.
This page carries the full results of the 1970 poll result published on March 6th, 1971.

Four names featured prominently this year: Mike Gibbs, John Surman, Mike Westbrook and Mike Osborne, all "New Wave" musicians. After his success through the 1960s Tubby Hayes could only muster two third places in the Tenor sax and Vibes section. Other names from the past who made it into the top three in their instrumental sections were Tony Coe (Clarinet), Bill Le Sage (Vibes) and Ronnie Ross (Baritone sax). Johnny Dankworth had virtually disappeared.
Traditional jazz musicians were few and far between although Sandy Brown hung onto the Clarinet top ranking although he was no longer playing 'trad' but Alex Welsh was the third most popular Small group.
New section winners included Norma Winstone, Paul Rutherford, Alan Skidmore, Keith Tippett, Mike Ratledge and Dave Holland.

Top Musician
1 John Surman
2 Mike Gibbs
3= Chris McGregor
3= John McLaughlin...

1 Paul Rutherford
2 Malcolm Griffiths
3 Nick Evans...

1 Mike Ratledge
2 Brian Auger
3 Alan Haven...

1 Dave Holland
2 Jack Bruce
3 Barry Guy...

1 Mike Gibbs
2 Mike Westbrook
3 Neil Ardley...

LP of the year
1 The Trio
2 Michael Gibbs
3 Four Compositions for Sextet (Tony Oxley)...

Big Band
1 Mike Westbrook
2 Mike Gibbs
3 Brotherhood of Breath...

1 Sandy Brown
2 Mike Osborne
3 Tony Coe...

Alto sax
1 Mike Osborne
2 Trevor Watts
3 Elton Dean...

Baritone sax
1 John Surman
2 Johnny Barnes
3 Ronnie Ross...

1 Frank Ricotti
2 Bill Le Sage
3 Tubby Hayes...

1 Tony Oxley
2 John Marshall
3= Louis Moholo
3= Jon Hiseman...

Small Group
1 Nucleus
2 The Trio
3 Alex Welsh...

Tenor sax
1 Alan Skidmore
2 Evan Parker
3 Tubby Hayes...

1 Harold McNair
2 Bob Downes
3 Ray Warleigh...

1 John Surman (Soprano sax)
2 Karl Jenkins (Oboe)
3 Elton Dean (Saxello)...

1 Mike Gibbs
2 Mike Westbrook
3 Tony Oxley...

Female Singer
1 Norma Winstone
2 Cleo Laine
3 Julie Driscoll...

1 Kenny Wheeler
2 Henry Lowther
3= Mongesi Feza
3= Ian Carr...

1 Keith Tippett
2 Howard Riley
3 John Taylor...

1 John McLaughlin
2 Chris Spedding
3 Derek Bailey...

New Star
1 Mike Gibbs
2 John McLaughlin
3 Mike Osborne...

Male Singer
1 Georgie Fame
2 Jack Bruce
3 Robert Wyatt...

Blues Artist
1 John Mayall
2 Alexis Korner
3 Jo Anne Kelly...

This page was last updated during February, 2014.
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