Afro Blue (feat. Erykah Badu)
Label: Blue Note Records
Robert Glasper's chops as a jazz pianist can't be questioned -- he picked up a Grammy nomination and turned heads early in his career. But Glasper is equally notable for bridging genres. Black Radio is a collaboration with a roster of urban, hip-hop and R&B voices that includes Erykah Badu, Me'Shell Ndegeocello and Mos Def. All the mixed elements make it difficult to classify this as a jazz record (there's a robotic cover of "Smells Like Teen Spirit," for goodness sake), but that's precisely the point: It's a testament to Glasper's potential to bring jazz back into the mainstream.