Listen Live

On Air Now

When it came time to create CKUA’s Essential Albums of 2017 list, we put the call out to members of Alberta’s cultural community to share their picks for the best music of the year. This year’s list was voted on by a jury of almost 40 CKUA staff, musicians, festival organizers and more.

We gave each of them 100 points to divide over their picks. They could give each album up to 30 points – we then added the points together to create the final list.

Once you’re done looking at the full list, be sure to check out what our individual jury members chose as this year’s absolute essentials.

Jump To Juror:
Allison Brock // Amy van Keeken // Andy Donnelly // Arianne Smith-Piquette // Arthur Fafard // Audrey Ochoa // Baba // Cam Hayden // Cathy Ennis // Cindy McLeod // David Myles // David Ward // Elliott Garnier // Erik Grice // Grant Stovel // Hayley Muir  //Jason Flammia // Jason Troock // Kathryn Calder // Kerry Clarke  //Kodi Hutchinson // Lark Clark // Leo Cripps // Lionel Rault // Lisa Wilton  //Monica Miller // Orest Soltykevych // Oskar Zybart // Paul Brooks // Ryan Dyck // Scott Franchuk // Scott Lilwall // Shuyler Jansen // Sue Panning // Terry David Mulligan // Tom Coxworth // Tony King // Yolanda Sargeant

Allison Brock

Host – Wide Cut Country

Close Ties

Rodney Crowell: 10 points

From A Room Volume 2

Chris Stapleton: 10 points

God’s Problem Child

Willie Nelson: 10 points

Leeroy Stagger

Love Versus: 10 points

Natural Conclusion

Rose Cousins: 10 points

Plastic Machine

Tom Phollips: 10 points

Same As I Have Ever Been

Matt Patershuk: 10 points

Skinny Dyck & Friends, 20 One-Nighters

Various Artists: 10 points

So You Wannabe An Outlaw

Steve Earle: 10 points

The Nashville Sound

Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit: 10 points

Amy van Keeken

CKUA Host

Moonshine Freeze

This Is The Kit: 20 points

Need to Feel Your Love

Sheer Mag: 20 points

Bedouine

Bedouine: 15 points

Audible Songs From Rockwood

Fiver: 10 points

Flying Microtonal Banana

King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard: 10 points

Petite Afrique

Somi: 10 points

The Siren’s Song

Kacy & Clayton: 10 points

Pure Mind

Fake Palms: 5 points

Andy Donnelly

Host – The Celtic Show

 

Anarchy and Love

Adrian Nation: 20 points

Land of Doubt

Sam Baker: 20 points

New Tomorrow

Dougie MacLean: 20 points

Queen Of Hearts

Offa Rex: 20 points

Rock Steady

Rawlins Cross: 20 points

Arianne Smith-Piquette

CKUA Music Library Technician

Love What Survives

Mount Kimbie: 25 points

The OOZ

King Krule: 25 points

1992 Deluxe

Princess Nokia: 10 points

Facades

Limp Wrist: 10 points

Godfather

Wiley: 10 points

No Mountains In Manhattan

Wiki: 10 points

Victory Lap

Propagandhi: 10 points

Arthur Fafard

Owner, Blackbyrd Myoozik

Harmony of Difference

Kamasi Washington: 25 points

Rest

Charlotte Gainsbourg: 25 points

The Kid

Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith: 25 points

Halo

Juana Molina: 15 points

Lee Ann Womack

The Lonely, the Lonesome & the Gone: 10 points

Audrey Ochoa

Artist

Abstract Orchestra

Dilla: 20 points

Drunk

Thundercat: 20 points

Nature Girl

Scotty Hills: 20 points

Hadestown: The Myth. The Musical.

Anaiis Mitchell: 10 points

Instinct

Red Litmus: 10 points

Rags And Feathers

Mallory Chipman: 10 points

Under Burning Skies

Soul Jazz Orchestra: 10 points

Baba

Host – Mid-Morning Mojo

Khlebnikov

Danny Michel: 20 points

Southern Blood

Gregg Allman: 20 points

Travelers: Dosti Music Project

Found Sound Nation: 20 points

Wander / Weave

Graftician: 20 points

Let The World Be Flooded Out

La Louma: 10 points

Take Flight

Maya Jane Coles : 10 points

Cam Hayden

Host – The Friday Night Blues Party

Groovin In Greaseland

Rick Estrin and the Nightcats: 20 points

Elvin Bishop’s Big Fun Trio

Elvin Bishop: 15 points

Right Place, Right Time

Monster Mike Welch and Mike Ledbetter: 15 points

Royal Mint

Cash Box Kings: 15 points

Tajmo

Taj Mahal/Keb Mo: 15 points

Who U Tellin?

Harrison Kennedy: 15 points

Blues and Boogie, Vol. 1

Kim Wilson: 5 points

Cathy Ennis

CKUA Host

A Deeper Understanding

The War on Drugs: 20 points

Ash

Ibeyi: 20 points

Bone on Bone

Bruce Cockburn: 20 points

Capacity

Big Thief: 20 points

IIII + IIII

IFE: 20 points

Cindy McLeod

Calgary International Blues Festival

Apocalipstick

The Harpoonist & the Axe Murderer: 10 points

Blue & Lonesome

Rolling Stones: 10 points

Blue Again

Janiva Magness: 10 points

Bluesifyin’

Donald Ray & Gas Blues Band: 10 points

Change My Game

Thorbjorn Risenger: 10 points

Man On Fire

Boogie Patrol: 10 points

Migration Blues

Eric Bibb: 10 points

Monarch

Sean Pinchin: 10 points

Steve Kozak Band

It’s Time: 10 points

What You See is What You Get

Jimmy Zee: 10 points

David Myles

Artist

Semper Femina

Laura Marling : 25 points

A Deeper Understanding

The War on Drugs: 15 points

DAMN.

Kendrick Lamar : 15 points

Twin Solitude

Leif Vollebekk: 15 points

The Nashville Sound

Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit: 10 points

Funk Wav Bounces Vol 1

Calvin Harris: 5 points

La grande nuit vidéo

Philippe B: 5 points

Queens Of The Breakers

The Barr Brothers: 5 points

This Old Dog

Mac DeMarco: 5 points

David Ward

Host – Freeway

Crack Up

Fleet Foxes: 10 points

Every Soul’s A Sailor

Stephen Fearing: 10 points

Gentlewoman, Ruby Man

Flo Morrissey and Matthew E. White: 10 points

Joan Shelley

Joan Shelley: 10 points

KINFOLK: Postcards From Everywhere

Nate Smith: 10 points

Lukas Nelson & The Promise of the Real

Lukas Nelson & The Promise of the Real: 10 points

Memphis … Yes, I’m Ready

Dee Dee Bridgewater: 10 points

The Weather Station

The Weather Station: 10 points

Try ;- )

Faith Healer: 10 points

Where The Galleon Sank

Kobo Town: 10 points

Elliott Garnier

CKUA Senior Producer

The Siren’s Song

Kacy & Clayton: 25 points

Colors

Beck: 20 points

DIM=SUM

DIM=SUM: 20 points

Whiteout Conditions

The New Pornographers: 20 points

This Old Dog

Mac DeMarco: 15 points

Erik Grice

Artist (Altameda)

Hallelujah Anyhow

Hiss Golden Messenger: 20 points

Modern Pressure

Daniel Romano: 20 points

A Deeper Understanding

The War on Drugs: 10 points

Antisocialites

Alvvays: 10 points

Dark Matter

Randy Newman: 10 points

Life After Youth

Land of Talk: 10 points

The Siren’s Song

Kacy & Clayton: 10 points

Together At Last

Jeff Tweedy: 10 points

Grant Stovel

Host – Alberta Morning

Life After Youth

Land of Talk: 20 points

The Siren’s Song

Kacy & Clayton: 20 points

The Weather Station

The Weather Station: 20 points

Try ;- )

Faith Healer: 20 points

Harmony of Difference

Kamasi Washington: 10 points

The Source

Tony Allen: 10 points

Hayley Muir

Host – The Spot

A Deeper Understanding

The War on Drugs: 11 points

Antisocialites

Alvvays: 11 points

Capacity

Big Thief: 11 points

Control

SZA: 11 points

DAMN.

Kendrick Lamar : 11 points

Hug of Thunder

Broken Social Scene: 11 points

Nothing Feels Natural

Priests: 11 points

Soul Of A Woman

Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings: 11 points

The Order of Time

Valerie June: 11 points

Jason Flammia

UP+DT Festival

Antisocialites

Alvvays: 15 points

Bird Brains – EP

Holy Fuck: 15 points

Death Song

The Black Angels: 15 points

Luciferian Towers

Godspeed You! Black Emperor: 15 points

Twin Solitude

Leif Vollebekk: 15 points

Utopia

Bjork: 15 points

Here Lies Man

Here Lies Man: 10 points

Jason Troock

Manager, Blackbyrd Myoozik

A Crow Looked At Me

Mount Eerie: 15 points

DAMN.

Kendrick Lamar: 15 points

American Dream

LCD Soundsystem: 10 points

async

Ryuichi Sakamoto: 10 points

Harmony of Difference

Kamasi Washington: 10 points

Melodrama

Lorde: 10 points

Sampha

Process: 10 points

The Kid

Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith: 10 points

Control

SZA: 5 points

Rest

Charlotte Gainsbourg: 5 points

Kathryn Calder

CKUA Host/ Artist (The New Pornographers)

A Deeper Understanding

The War on Drugs: 10 points

All of My Bodies

Holy Hum: 10 points

Bedouine

Bedouine: 10 points

Clouds Change, Nostalgia Stays The Same

Cascade Falls: 10 points

Everybody Works

Jay Som: 10 points

Ken

Destroyer: 10 points

Out In The Storm

Waxahatchee: 10 points

Repeating Myself

Peach Pyramid: 10 points

Slowdive

Slowdive: 10 points

The Weather Station

The Weather Station: 10 points

Kerry Clarke

CKUA Host / Calgary Folk Music Festival

American Flowers

Birds of Chicago: 10 points

Disco Popular

Mexican Institute of Sound : 10 points

Elwan

Tinariwen: 10 points

Johnny Goldtooth and The Chevy Casanovas

Kevin Breit: 10 points

Mental Illness

Aimee Mann : 10 points

New Magic

Son Little: 10 points

The Order of Time

Valerie June: 10 points

Twin Solitude

Leif Vollebekk: 10 points

Watershed

Amelia Curran: 10 points

Where The Galleon Sank

Kobo Town: 10 points

Kodi Hutchinson

Host – A Time for Jazz

Afterthought

Audrey Ochoa: 10 points

Alto Gusto

PJ Perry Quartet: 10 points

From This Side

Johanna Silllanpaa: 10 points

Live At The Ironwood

Prime Time Big Band: 10 points

Mutant

The Fusionauts: 10 points

Northern Adventures – The Canada Sessions, Vol. 1

Al Muirhead: 10 points

Rags And Feathers

Mallory Chipman: 10 points

Sketches From The Road

Keith O’Rourke: 10 points

Suite Jubilation

Johnny Summers: 10 points

The Gap

Rubim de Toledo: 10 points

Lark Clark

Host – World Spinning

Amar y Vivir

La Santa Cecilia: 14 points

Criollo Electrik

Roberto López: 14 points

Elwan

Tinariwen: 16 points

Freedom Highway

Rhiannon Giddens: 14 points

Kidal

Tamikrest: 14 points

Lo Unico Constante

Alex Cuba: 14 points

Where The Galleon Sank

Kobo Town: 14 points

Leo Cripps

Cofounder, Calgary Reggae Fest

Chronology

Chronixx: 30 points

Wash House Ting

J Boog: 25 points

4:44

Jay-Z: 20 points

Slow Heart

Kip Moore: 15 points

More Life

Drake: 10 points

Lionel Rault

Host – Somethin’ Else/Lionel’s Vinyls

A Deeper Understanding

The War on Drugs: 10 points

Americana

Ray Davies: 10 points

Colors

Beck: 10 points

Duende

Band of Heathens: 10 points

Hallelujah Anyhow

Hiss Golden Messenger: 10 points

Keepsake

Elizabeth & the Catapult: 10 points

Southern Blood

Gregg Allman: 10 points

Tajmo

Taj Mahal/Keb Mo: 10 points

The Nashville Sound

Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit: 10 points

Waiting On a Song

Dan Auerbach: 10 points

Lisa Wilton

CKUA Host

A Deeper Understanding

The War on Drugs: 20 points

Northern Passages

The Sadies: 20 points

The Nashville Sound

Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit: 15 points

The Navigator

Hurray For the Riff Raff: 15 points

Antisocialites

Alvvays: 10 points

Big Surf

Los: 10 points

Doom Wop

Prom Queen: 10 points

Monica Miller

Host – How I Hear It/Mixtape

Country Hustle

Jeb Loy Nichols: 10 points

Hudson

Hudson: 10 points

If All I Was Was Black

Mavis Staples: 10 points

Ladilikan

Trio Da Kali and Kronos Quartet: 10 points

Lo Unico Constante

Alex Cuba: 10 points

Moonshine Freeze

This Is The Kit: 10 points

Soul Of A Woman

Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings: 10 points

The Gap

Rubim de Toledo: 10 points

Under Burning Skies

The Souljazz Orchestra: 10 points

Waiting On A Song

Dan Auerbach: 10 points

Orest Soltykevych

Host – Saturday Breakfast/Sunday Breakfast

Bach Trios

Yo-Yo Ma, cello / Chris Thile, mandolin / Edgar Meyer, bass: 10 points

Beach; Chaminade; Howell

Danny Driver, piano / BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra / Rebecca Miller: 10 points

Bruch – String Octet; String Quintets

Nash Ensemble: 10 points

Chopin – Works for Piano & Orchestra

Jan Lisiecki, piano / NDR Elbphilharmonie Orchester / Krzysztof Urbański: 10 points

Gone – The Album

Min Kym, violin / London Symphony Orchestra / Barry Wordsworth: 10 points

Handel Goes Wild

L’Arpeggiata / Christina Pluhar: : 10 points

New Era

Andreas Ottensamer, clarinet / Kammerakademie Potsdam : 10 points

Rachmaninov Piano Trios

Gidon Kremer, violin / Giedre Dirvanauskaite, cello / Daniil Trifonov, piano: 10 points

Strauss – Oboe Concerto; Wind Sonatina #2

Winds of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra / Alexei Ogrintchouk, oboe & direction: 10 points

Vivaldi – 4 Seasons, 4 Viols

Les Voix Humaines: 10 points

Oskar Zybart

CKUA Host

Small Town

Bill Frisell & Thomas Morgan : 25 points

Solace

Comaduster: 25 points

Kingsbane

Osyron: 20 points

The New Haunts

The New Haunts: 20 points

Antisocialites

Alvvays: 10 points

Paul Brooks

National Music Centre

Plunge

Fever Ray: 20 points

Kelly Lee Owens

Kelly Lee Owens: 15 points

The OOZ

King Krule: 15 points

Bicep

Bicep: 10 points

Black Origami

Jlin: 10 points

Party

Aldous Harding : 10 points

Process

Sampha: 10 points

The Tenderness

Blue Hawaii: 10 points

Ryan Dyck

Artist – (Skinny Dyck)

The Siren’s Song

Kacy & Clayton: 20 points

Best Troubadour

Bonnie “Prince” Billy: 15 points

Colter Wall

Colter Wall: 15 points

Canadiana Grotesquica

Geoff Berner: 10 points

Lotta Sea Lice

Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile: 10 points

Rule 62

Whitney Rose: 10 points

Twenty One-Nighters

Skinny Dyck & Friends: 10 points

Way Out West

Marty Stuart & His Fabulous Superlatives: 10 points

Scott Franchuk

Engineer/Producer at Riverdale Recorders

Dark Matter

Randy Newman: 30 points

The Siren’s Song

Kacy & Clayton: 20 points

Adiós

Glen Campbell: 10 points

Kids In The Street

Justin Townes Earle: 10 points

On The Rocks

Midland: 10 points

The Nashville Sound

Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit: 10 points

Way Out West

Marty Stuart And His Fabulous Superlatives: 10 points

Scott Lilwall

CKUA Web Editor

Khlebnikov

Danny Michel: 20 points

The Nashville Sound

Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit: 20 points

The Weather Station

The Weather Station: 20 points

Whiteout Conditions

The New Pornographers: 20 points

Antisocialites

Alvvays10 points

Victory Lap

Propagandhi: 10 points

Shuyler Jansen

Artist – (Kacy & Clayton)

Elwan

Tinariwen: 30 points

Link Wray

Link Wray: 25 points

West Of Rome (Reissue, New West Records)

Vic Chesnutt: 25 points

Live at Third Man Records

Earth: 20 points

Sue Panning

Canmore Folk Music Festival

Alone in a Crowd

Russell DeCarle: 10 points

Bone on Bone

Bruce Cockburn: 10 points

Fifteen

The Wailin’ Jennys: 10 points

Freedom Highway

Rhiannon Giddens: 10 points

Khlebnikov

Danny Michel: 10 points

Natural Conclusion

Rose Cousins: 10 points

The Siren’s Song

Kacy & Clayton: 10 points

The Willow Collection

Cassie and Maggie Macdonald: 10 points

Whiskey

Joey Landreth: 10 points

Wonderland

Coco Love Alcorn: 10 points

Terry David Mulligan

Host – Mulligan Stew

Introduce Yerself

Gord Downie: 20 points

A Week at the Warehouse

Alan Doyle: 15 points

Pleasure

Feist: 15 points

Songs of Experience

U2: 15 points

New Mistakes

Terra Lightfoot: 10 points

Panther in the Dollhouse

Whitehorse: 10 points

Soul Of A Woman

Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings: 10 points

One Long Dream

Son Real: 5 points

Tom Coxworth

Folk Routes

Anarchy and Love

Adrian Nation: 10 points

Bone on Bone

Bruce Cockburn: 10 points

Freedom Highway

Rhiannon Giddens : 10 points

Gathering

Josh Ritter : 10 points

Shine A Light

Billy Bragg & Joe Henry: 10 points

Stitch of the World

Tift Merritt: 10 points

The Penny Collector

Carrie Elkin: 10 points

The Queen of Hearts

Offa Rex: 10 points

When the Bloom Falls from the Rose

Sarah Jane Scouten: 10 points

Wonderland

Coco Love Alcorn: 10 points

Tony King

Host – Stardust

Black Origami

Jlin: 20 points

Capacity

Big Thief: 20 points

Drunk

Thundercat: 20 points

Migration

Bonobo: 20 points

Semper Femina

Laura Marling: 20 points

Yolanda Sargeant

Artist – (Sargent and Comrade)

Nature Girl

Scotty Hills: 30 points

Soul Of A Woman

Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings: 30 points

Magic

Windigo: 25 points

Nebula Songs

Hello Moth: 15 points