I listened to a large amount of jazz and then in my mid-twenties, for no apparent reason, I just stopped. Two years ago, I heard some Dexter Gordon which reminded me of what I was missing and ever since, I've been trying to fill in the gaps of classic jazz I hadn't heard. One artist I listened to this weekend was Bill Evans, but maybe I'm still not ready for him. On the other hand, I just heard Eric Dolphy's Out There for the first time and it's a good song, has some great soloing (Ron Carter on cello!) and provides an overall sound and aesthetic that still sounds new 45 years after it was recorded. This BBC review points out that unlike Ornette Coleman, Dolphy managed to push the "envelope" of bebop without overthrowing its basic conventions. It also describes Dolphy's solo as a series of variations as if Philip Glass arranged a Charlie Parker solo. Now that would be interesting.
I had to compete for the second alto saxaphone chair with Eric Dolphy. I ended up getting the chair, although I thought Eric really sounded great and I was surprised that I beat him out. However, people who heard me play at the time said I just sounded like an explosion. In the orchestra Eric and I played together and he played first clarinet and I played second.