STAN GETZ LIVE IN LONDON
From the magical archive of Les Tomkins comes this premiere superb release of Stan Getz. Recorded in the spring of 1964 at Ronnie Scott's Club in London, this 70 minute CD features nine outstanding performances. This is not a reissue!
Titles: Manha de Carnaval Six, Nix, Quix-Flix Here's That Rainy Day All God's Children Got Rhythm Autumn Leaves Exactly Like You Little Girl Blues Getz Blues #1 Getz Blues #2
Writing about Stan Getz is always a bit daunting. Which superlatives do you choose to describe the sheer jazz virtuosity of this man? He gave so much pleasure to so many listeners, and caused many fellow-greats to speak of his playing in glowing terms. A certain Mr. Coltrane has been quoted as saying; "We'd all play like that if we could".
My own memories of my pleasurable and productive encounters with Stan during a 15-year period are vivid and varied. An amazing afternoon in an apartment at London's Playboy Club springs to mind...Stan had positive statements to make about every stage in his 49 professional years. And earlier - he said he hadn't chosen to play saxophone himself: "It was the only instrument my father could afford to buy me". This being in Philadelphia, where he was born in February 1927. A self-taught player, he went on the road at 15, and made his first recording with ace trombonist Jack Teagarden's band when he was only 16. He considered that period had the most effect on him: "It was a very good introduction to professional music for me. Teagarden was a great musician; his playing is timeless - and it's logical".
At 20, his initial impact on the jazz public was as a member of the Woody Herman saxophone section known as the Four Brothers, and with his masterly, lyrical solo on Early Autumn. "I felt that band was the greatest he ever had. It was wonderful, playing with it every night and seeing the high level of consistent musicianship on the band". After a dozen or so poll-winning years leading his own groups and figuring in a range of stirring albums, the Getz brilliance began to be appreciated by a much wider audience in 1962, after he fused jazz and bossa nova rhythms in collaboration with Charlie Byrd and Antonio Carlos Jobim, producing two major hits in Desafinado and The Girl From Ipanema. But as he insisted: "I recorded them because I loved the music -I thought it was beautiful. I never thought it would be a hit - I didn't even think of a hit!"
March 1964 represented an historic double first for Stan Getz - his first appearance in a British jazz club; his first time working with a British rhythm section. For me, as an avid devotee of both Stans, Getz and Tracey, it was a joy to be able to capture some substantial samples of their singular and highly successful meeting. As Stan G. told me at the time: "I was a little wary of coming over and working with a strange rhythm section, but I was very happy with these guys. They're really good - they have big ears". Les Tomkins
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