Dear All About Jazz Readers,

If you're familiar with All About Jazz, you know that we've dedicated over two decades to supporting jazz as an art form, and more importantly, the creative musicians who make it. Our enduring commitment has made All About Jazz one of the most culturally important websites of its kind in the world reaching hundreds of thousands of readers every month. However, to expand our offerings and develop new means to foster jazz discovery we need your help.

You can become a sustaining member for a modest $20 and in return, we'll immediately hide those pesky Google ads PLUS deliver exclusive content and provide access to future articles for a full year! This combination will not only improve your AAJ experience, it will allow us to continue to rigorously build on the great work we first started in 1995. Read on to view our project ideas...

270

Stan Getz: Plays for Lovers

By

Sign in to view read count
This compilation enters a marketplace littered with Getz compilations—and it's superior to the lot. It triumphs over the ton of Verve Getz disks by virtue of not having "The Girl From Ipanema," which the Verve marketing department assumed jazz fans needed to own on at least five Getz discs. More seriously, this anthology, culled from the newly combined Fantasy and Concord labels, offers a glowing showcase of Getz the ballad genius, from the early '50s to the '80s.

The nine tunes here present a strong case for Stan Getz sharing the honor with Ben Webster as the most deep and sophisticated interpreter of ballads on tenor sax ever. When Coltrane remarked, "We would all play like Stan Getz if we could," I would speculate that Coltrane had ballads in mind when thinking of Getz's supremacy.

The selection of ballad interpretations from the '50s show a youthful, boppish Getz matched by fine musicians nowhere near his level: Cal Tjader on vibes and Vince Guaraldi on piano. Their version of "For All We Know" could have been more effective if Getz had been alone in the studio, for the little difference their tiny coloristic contributions make. A better coordination with Getz is offered by bassist Percy Heath on "My Old Flame." You can nearly swear that somewhere Lady Day was humming along.

The collection skips from the '50s to the '70s, since Getz was the bossa nova money machine for Verve in the decade between. The '70s selection is a fine one with the Bill Evans trio—in spite of the fact that Evans and Getz both sound they are happily ignoring the cues of the other, stubborn bastards as they were—but somehow the players get through it with grace.

The selections from the '80s, originally released on Concord, are simply majestic, and it is beyond me why they didn't receive more critical acclaim when they were originally released. "Close Enough for Love" and "A Time for Love" are occasions for Getz to stretch into long, lyrical lines that became his signature until his death. Pianist Lou Levy gives just the right sympathetically subtle support, and did Getz ever have a more sensitive drummer than Victor Lewis?

Some jazz fans may be turned off by the "For Lovers" label on a CD compilation—the British authors of The Penguin Guide to Jazz on CD found it damning that Verve released a "Coltrane for Lovers" collection. It doesn't bother me. Nor should it bother you in the instance of this Getz collection, because you don't have to be in love to realize this is the best Getz sampler there is.

Track Listing: Easy Living; How Long Has This Been Going On?; Spring is Here; For All We Know; My Old Flame; Lover Man (Oh Where Can You Be?); But Beautiful; Close Enough for Love; A Time for Love.

Personnel: Stan Getz: tenor saxophone; Lou Levy: piano; Victor Lewis: drums; Monty Budwig: bass; Cal Tjader: vibes; Bill Evans: piano; Percy Heath: bass; Eddie Duran; guitar; and others.

Title: Plays for Lovers | Year Released: 2006 | Record Label: Concord Music Group

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.

Getting Into Jazz
Building a Jazz Library
Bailey's Bundles
Building a Jazz Library
Jazz in the Aquarian Age
Extended Analysis
Album Reviews
Extended Analysis
Album Reviews
Wide Open Jazz and Beyond
Album Reviews
Multiple Reviews
Album Reviews
Read more articles
 

Jazz Samba / Jazz...

Point Entertainment
2012

buy
 

Plays

Point Entertainment
2012

buy
Quintets: The Clef & Norgran Studio Albums

Quintets: The Clef &...

Verve Music Group
2011

buy
 

Anthology

Point Entertainment
2011

buy

Related Articles

Read Hastings Jazz Collective/Shadow Dances Album Reviews
Hastings Jazz Collective/Shadow Dances
By Dan McClenaghan
May 21, 2019
Read Crowded Heart Album Reviews
Crowded Heart
By Nicholas F. Mondello
May 21, 2019
Read That's a Computer Album Reviews
That's a Computer
By Jerome Wilson
May 21, 2019
Read All I Do Is Bleed Album Reviews
All I Do Is Bleed
By Paul Naser
May 21, 2019
Read LE10 18-05 Album Reviews
LE10 18-05
By Karl Ackermann
May 20, 2019
Read Remembering Miles Album Reviews
Remembering Miles
By Dan McClenaghan
May 20, 2019
Read Merry Peers Album Reviews
Merry Peers
By Bruce Lindsay
May 20, 2019