WORKS: Nobody Else But Me
PERFORMER: Stan Getz (ts), Gary Burton (vb), Gene Cherico (b), Joe Hunt (d)
CATALOGUE NO: 521 660 2
Over the years, the work of Stan Getz has increasingly been taken for granted, yet he remains one of the great jazz saxophonists. Today he is remembered more for his Grammy-winning bossa nova albums than for straight-ahead jazz. But even at the height of his success, he was in the recording studios producing Nobody Else But Me, an out-and-out jazz album that ranks among the finest in his distinguished career.
Incredibly, it has remained unissued until now: recording executives kept it under wraps, fearing it would destroy his money-spinning jazz samba image. Here Getz is feathery and febrile on ‘Little Girl Blue’ but his control of tonal colouring enables him to intensify the emotional dimension of his playing from gentle caresses to powerful, steely assertions on the title track and ‘What Is This Thing Called Love?’
There is a consummate elegance in Getz’s playing all through this album; his uniquely beautiful melodic gift, his profound harmonic discretion and his bustling rhythmic energy are all part of a very gifted player whose contribution to jazz has still yet to be fully recognised. Stuart Nicholson