Best Jazz Artist - 2002
Readers' Choice: Valerie Tyson
An incredible artist literally peddles his goods in our own back yard but is woefully underappreciated. Par for the course, unfortunately, where bled-dry standards and even less-interesting mendacity can be passed off as jazz music. Recognized internationally as one of the most promising avant-jazz alchemists, Kenny Millions, a.k.a. Keshavan Maslak, is accustomed to performing highbrow gigs abroad. Here at home, however, he spends most of his time at Hollywood's Sushi Blues offering raw fish with an occasional skronk. But the wildly inventive saxophone/clarinet whiz, who has meshed brainpower with the likes of Philip Glass and John Zorn, did offer locals a look and listen this summer with a series of rare live performances on local stages beyond Sushi Blues. The light fare Millions serves with his own Sushi Blues Band is certainly better than a sea urchin surprise but no match for the out-there records he's made with his far weirder pan-Asian trio.