obviously, there are no singular favorites or best.
with that in mind, Ronald Shannon Jackson is my favorite drummer, and my favorite composer/band-leader.
in my opinion, that is because there is no essential difference between his drumming and his composition.
in this music, composition is the means by which one gets a group of musicians to coalesce and enter a musical cosmos that the composer heard inside themselves.
Ronald Shannon Jackson advised musicians to pay attention to what they first play when they pick up their instrument, by themselves, at home. That is the direction in which one should continue to move.
on a purely external level, I subjectively disagree with some of the aesthetic choices in his music, mostly due to the point in linear time in which it manifested.
good thing then that there is no need to listen externally!
in fact, this speaks only to the true spiritual power of this music’s essence.
personally, I would summarize it as: Shannon’s blood and chi flowed with something akin to thunder and lightning energy, containing a beaming quality of purely positive life affirmation.
it is clear that he attracted beings of a similar and/or complimentary vibration, as we all do.
I am thankful to have been connected with a friend and mentor in Tomchess, who had that same relationship directly, with Ronald Shannon Jackson. All the elders have told us of the importance of the elders – may we be worthy to stand on their shoulders!
some recommended listening: