Stan Getz

stan-getz-nyc-[stg01]-1949Stan Getz has often been associated with the west coast cool sound, but he was born in Philadelphia, PA in 1927, and raised in the East Bronx. His main influences on the tenor sax were Lester Young and Tex Beneke and later alto saxophonist Charlie Parker. His early professional career brought him to California in 1945 where he was hired by Stan Kenton to play in his orchestra. Kenton enjoyed great popularity and worked with Bob Hope on his popular radio show. Getz left Kenton after a year and then performed with Jimmy Dorsey and later Benny Goodman. As the big band era was coming to a close Getz settled back on the east coast and became part of the bebop scene in New York.

Stan Getz - Episode 1

Savoy Records signed Stan to lead a recording session in 1946. For his first job as a leader, he formed a "Swing-Bop Quartet" and recorded four tunes with pianist Hank Jones, bassist Curly Russell and drummer Max Roach. The titles were: "Opus De Bop," "Running Water," "Don't Worry 'Bout Me," and "And The Angels Swing."
CompositionArtistYear
Lester Leaps inLester Young/Count Basie1939
KokoCharlie Parker1945
AlwaysStan Getz/Kai Winding1945
Opus de BopStan Getz Quartet1946
And the Angels SwingStan Getz Quartet1946

Stan Getz - Episode 2

In late 1946 Stan was playing with a group of young, like-minded saxophone players in L.A., all influenced strongly by Lester Young. They were: Herb Steward, Zoot Sims and Jimmy Giuffre. Ralph Burns, the staff arranger for Woody Herman's new bop-based band, came to hear them playing with a local band and was so impressed that he recommended that Herman hire them for his band. The group was to be known as Herman's Second Herd. Between December 22 and 31, 1947, this band recorded fourteen songs, releasing eleven of them. Five of these eleven became hit singles: "I've Got News For You", "Keen and Peachy", "The Goof and I", "Four Brothers" (named after the saxophone players of Stan Getz, Serge Chaloff, Zoot Sims and Herb Steward) and "Summer Sequence." All of Stan's influences are at play in his work by now: notably Lester Young, Charlie Parker, and Dexter Gordon.
CompositionArtistYear
Four BrothersStan Getz/Woody Herman1947
Early AutumnStan Getz/Woody Herman1948
Early Autumn (Live)Stan Getz/Woody Herman1949
Keeper of the FlameStan Getz/Woody Herman1948
Pennies From HeavenStan Getz/Al Haig1949

Stan Getz - Episode 3

CompositionArtistAlbumYear
WeeStan Getz/Dizzy GillespieDizzy Gillespie All-Stars1956
Parker 51Stan GetzLive at Storyville Vol 1-21951
Moonlight in VermontStan Getz/Johnny SmithJohnny Smith Quintet1952
Stella By StarlightStan GetzStan Getz Plays1952
It Don’t Mean a ThingStan Getz/Dizzy GillespieDiz and Getz1953
Little PonyStan Getz/Count BasieLive at Birdland1954
ShineStan GetzWest Coast Jazz1955
Dark EyesStan Getz/Dizzy GilliespieDizzy Gillespie All-Stars1956

Stan Getz - Episode 4

Getz lived in Europe in the late 1950’s and moved back to the states in 1960 and began a new period of creativity. He recorded one of his best albums, Focus, with arrangements by Eddie Sauter in 1961. Sauter provided the lush string backgrounds and no written music for him; Getz improvised over all of the arrangements. In 1962 Stan met guitarist Charlie Byrd who had recently returned from a trip to Brazil and brought back tapes of a jazz-samba hybrid called bossa nova. Getz was immediately interested in the sound and asked producer Creed Taylor to set up a recording session, which was eventually released as Jazz Samba in 1962. The record was a hit and prompted a follow up album released in 1964 entitled Getz/Gilberto that contained the Grammy winning track, “The Girl From Ipanema.”
CompositionArtistAlbumYear
I’m LateStan GetzFocus1961
HerStan GetzFocus1961
DesafinadoStan GetzJazz Samba1962
The Girl From IpanemaStan GetzGetz/Gilberto1964