Stan Getz & Joao Gilberto – Getz/Gilberto (1964)

Getz/Gilberto is an album by American saxophonist Stan Getz and Brazilian guitarist João Gilberto, featuring pianist and composer Antônio Carlos Jobim (Tom Jobim), who also composed many of the tracks. It was released in March 1964 by Verve Records. The album features the vocals of Astrud Gilberto on two tracks, “Garota de Ipanema” (“The Girl from Ipanema”) and “Corcovado”. The artwork was done by artist Olga Albizu. Getz/Gilberto is a jazz and bossa nova album and includes tracks such as “Desafinado”, “Corcovado”, and “Garota de Ipanema”. The last received a Grammy Award for Record of the Year and started Astrud Gilberto’s career. “Doralice” and “Para Machucar Meu Coração” strengthened Gilberto’s and Jobim’s respect for the tradition of pre-bossa nova samba.

Getz/Gilberto is considered the record that popularized bossa nova worldwide and was one of the best-selling jazz albums of all time, selling more than 2 million copies in 1964. It was included in Rolling Stone’s and Vibe’s lists of best albums of all time. Getz/Gilberto was widely acclaimed by music critics, who praised Gilberto’s vocals and the album’s bossa nova groove and minimalism. Getz/Gilberto received Grammy Awards for Best Jazz Instrumental Album, Individual or Group and Best Engineered Recording – Non-Classical; it also became the first non-American album to win one for Album of the Year, in 1965.

Track Listing:

Side one
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. “The Girl from Ipanema” Antônio Carlos Jobim, Vinicius de Moraes, Norman Gimbel 5:21
2. “Doralice” Antônio Almeida, Dorival Caymmi 2:47
3. “Para Machucar Meu Coração” Ary Barroso 5:07
4. “Desafinado” Antônio Carlos Jobim, Newton Mendonça 4:09

Side two
No. Title Writer(s) Length
1. “Corcovado (Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars)” Antônio Carlos Jobim, Gene Lees 4:17
2. “Só Danço Samba” Antônio Carlos Jobim, Vinicius de Moraes 3:42
3. “O Grande Amor” Antônio Carlos Jobim, Vinicius de Moraes 5:27
4. “Vivo Sonhando” Antônio Carlos Jobim 2:56
Total length: 33:46

Review: One of the biggest-selling jazz albums of all time, not to mention bossa nova’s finest moment, Getz/Gilberto trumped Jazz Samba by bringing two of bossa nova’s greatest innovators — guitarist/singer João Gilberto and composer/pianist Antonio Carlos Jobim — to New York to record with Stan Getz. The results were magic. Ever since Jazz Samba, the jazz marketplace had been flooded with bossa nova albums, and the overexposure was beginning to make the music seem like a fad. Getz/Gilberto made bossa nova a permanent part of the jazz landscape not just with its unassailable beauty, but with one of the biggest smash hit singles in jazz history — “The Girl From Ipanema,” a Jobim classic sung by João’s wife, Astrud Gilberto, who had never performed outside of her own home prior to the recording session. Beyond that, most of the Jobim songs recorded here also became standards of the genre — “Corcovado” (which featured another vocal by Astrud), “So Danço Samba,” “O Grande Amor,” a new version of “Desafinado.” With such uniformly brilliant material, it’s no wonder the album was such a success but, even apart from that, the musicians all play with an effortless grace that’s arguably the fullest expression of bossa nova’s dreamy romanticism ever brought to American listeners. Getz himself has never been more lyrical, and Gilberto and Jobim pull off the harmonic and rhythmic sophistication of the songs with a warm, relaxed charm. This music has nearly universal appeal; it’s one of those rare jazz records about which the purist elite and the buying public are in total agreement. Beyond essential.

Schill Score: 9.5/10

Listen to Album on Spotify

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