First,spell Saxophone.This is a very difficult question. you didn't qualify the question or,add era or,any genre. That being said, I vote my top five:
1.Charlie Parker- made it look easy, even while in a stupor.
2. Dexter Gordon- swing, tone, muscular solos-40s,50s,60s
3. Lester Young- sweet, buttery tone,succinct melodic solos
4. John Coltrane- spiritual, mastery of axe,influenced by top three
5. Sonny Rollins- resilient,Bebop stamina,classic tone,influenced by all of the above,last of the living saxophone masters.
My greatest saxophone players:
These players are the most creative saxophonists in the history of jazz, and they made the biggest contribution to the development of this music
Nextstopjupiter's list is pretty hard to argue with, but I absolutely LOVE, ADORE, WORSHIP John Coltrane, now and forever.
Mine is A LOVE SUPREME because these are a few of MY FAVORITE THINGS!!
There are many greats seek and listen.
The list is endless so many horn players, to list them would take a lifetime. Think of the unknown players who have not recorded,some one could be living right next to you ready to blow our minds.
Sorry. There is NO "greatest" anything in the arts. Shall we designate someone the "greatest" because of the number of recordings sold? No, I think not.
Hands down,Charles "Yardbird" Parker !!!! The father of them all.
maybe no greatest, but my favorites:
not necessarily in that order
Put Trane at the top of the list. Parker. Lester Young. Dexter Gordon. Wayne Shorter. Johnny Hodges. Ornette Coleman. Eric Dolphy.
Mustn't forget the man who could play three at a time and make them all sound great: Rahsaan Roland Kirk.
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