A personal, and sometimes controversial, selection by three jazz critics of the best 250 jazz records - mostly LP collections of 78 rpm originals - from the earliest roots of music to the beginnings of the modern jazz era. Each record is placed in its musical context and reviewed in some depth. For each disc, full details of personnel and recording dates and locations are given.
Max Harrison is a musicologist who reviewed for The Times and The Gramophone from 1967-90, has written widely on jazz, and contributed to the 1980 edition of The New Grove Dictionary of Music and other reference works. Charles Fox (deceased) was a broadcaster and reviewer. He was the host of Jazz Today, a weekly British radio program. Eric Thacker (deceased) was a clergyman, with a long-standing interest in jazz.