Getz / Gilberto
Audio CD | Extra Tracks, Reissued, Remastered
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|Audio CD, Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered, May 20, 1997||
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GETZ STAN / GILBERTO JOAO GETZ / GILBERTO
Originally released in March 1964, this collaboration between saxophonist Stan Getz and guitarist João Gilberto came at seemingly the end of the bossa nova craze Getz himself had sparked in 1962 with Jazz Samba, his release with American guitarist Charlie Byrd. Jazz Samba remains the only jazz album to reach number one in the pop charts. In fact, the story goes that Getz had to push for the release of Getz/Gilberto since the company did not want to compete with its own hit; it was a good thing he did. Getz/Gilberto, which featured composer Antonio Carlos Jobim on piano, not only yielded the hit "Girl from Ipanema" (sung by Astrud Gilberto, the guitarist's wife, who had no professional experience) but also "Corcovado" ("Quiet Night")--an instant standard, and the definitive version of "Desafinado." Getz/Gilberto spent 96 weeks in the charts and won four Grammys. It remains one of those rare cases in popular music where commercial success matches artistic merit. Bossa nova's "cool" aesthetic--with its understated rhythms, rich harmonies, and slightly detached delivery--had been influenced, in part, by cool jazz. Gilberto in particular was a Stan Getz fan. Getz, with his lyricism, the bittersweet longing in his sound, and his restrained but strong swing, was the perfect fit. His lines, at once decisive and evanescent, focus the rest of the group's performance without overpowering. A classic. --Fernando Gonzalez
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Top customer reviews
Legendary and worth more than what I paid. I'm not a BN junkie, so some of the more detailed music criticisms here may be accurate but are beyond my expertise. But I loved this both musically and technically. The only limitation on this SACD is that it is only stereo, but it still sounds better than either my FLAC or CD versions of the same. A must for any jazz SACD collection...
Astrud's voice is somehow slightly lusher, and more frustratingly cute here. I listen to this at least 3 times a week...
A couple of notes for several "1 Star" reviewers:
1) It is a SACD, period. It will not play on your old CD player. The reason some other SACDS do play on your CD player is because they are hybrids, made to play on both; this one is only SACD.
2) The hiss some of you heard is there--yes. It's in the recording. It's authentic to the recording. I have Coltrane and Davis SACDs that have similar. If anything, the SACD probably brings them out more. Part of the deal...
3) Astrud Gilberto sings in Portuguese? Really?
scored another blockbuster hit with this duet masterpiece which he made with
Joao Gilberto in 1963 that became one of Bossa Nova's greatest moments as
well as Getz' crowning achievement. Hailed as one of the biggest-selling jazz
albums of all time, Getz/Gilberto had bought two of the Bossa Nova's greatest
innovators: guitarist- vocalist Joao Gilberto and Antonio Carlos Jobim, to New
York City for the making of the wonderful recording as the album resulted with
pure magic. Starting with the international hit single The Girl From Impanema,
the lyrical track set features solid hits, including Corcavado, So Danco Samba,
O Grande Amore, a new version of Desfinado and Vivo Sonhando, which they
performed with such unassailable beauty. Astrud Gilberto, who had made her
cameo appearance on the session, said that her husband Joao informed Getz
that she "could sing on the recording", while producer Creed Taylor recall that
it took Getz' wife Monica to bring both Astrud and Joao Gilberto into recording
studio (Mrs. Getz had the sense that Astrud could make a hit while he himself
insisted on Astrud's presence). Highlighted by plenty of uncanny material it is
no wonder that the album was a colossal success, as the musicians performs
with effortless grace and honour, which even gave this crowning achievement
it's universal immortality as Getz and Jobim pulled off the harmonic perfection
in a relaxed charm of it's own. As the part of the Verve Master Edition Series,
Getz/Gilberto will certainly ring out even more brighter as a timeless landmark
from jazz history in greater form.
The good news is that the cover does say a lot about the book. I have 3 versions of this samba classic from Stan Getz and Joao Gilberto- the Red Book CD, the SACD and the new SHM-SACD. To my ears, the SHM-SACD is the best-sounding.
The opening song, "The Girl from Ipanema" has never sounded more like the real thing. Gilberto's crooning is warm, open and natural. The cymbals sparkle. Getz's saxophone blows smoothly. The first comment from a musician friend of mine (a non-audiophile) after hearing "The Girl from Ipanema" was, "It sounds very analogue".
And I agree. The disc sounds organic and analogue. Some slight edge when Getz hits the high notes, but that may exist in the original LP. In general, the disc sounds more analogue than digital and doesn't have the negative sonic qualities one might associate with many CD's.
Perhaps there are better sounding SACD's - for example, the Chesky SACDs of relatively unknown (but talented) artists. But this is one of the best sounding SACDs from the catalog of a famous artist that I have heard. (Analogue Production's SACD of Nat "king" Cole's "The Very Thought of You", is another that comes to mind).
These discs from Universal are the first to combine 2 existing technologies- SHM and SACD. I have 2 others: The Allman Brothers "Live at Fillmore East" and The Who's "Who's Next". I liked the Allman Brothers disc, but the The Who disc was not worth the money. Like other reviewers have pointed out, it has a kind of muffled dynamics, even in the new format.
This is an expensive disc, so it will only appeal to a niche market in search of the absolute sound. I don't think the sonic benefits would be appreciated on a commercial system. But for those audiophiles out there looking for an engaging experience from the imperfect CD format, I would recommend this disc without hesitation.
I see that quite a few of the new SHM-SACD's are out of stock, despite their high price. I hope that Amazon appreciates the fact that there is a strong market out there for hi rez formats that offer alternatives to regular CDs.
Perhaps in the future Amazon will consider introducing a separate category for high resolution formats like SACD, SHM, XRCD, etc.