Stan Getz Community

Remembering Stan...

IS IT POSSIBLE TO ANALYZE THE GREATNESS OF THE STAN GETZ MAGIC

OR DO WE JUST SAY THANKS STAN

AND REPLAY THE VIDEOS AND JATP FRAGMENTS AND FILM CLIPS AND RERUN OUR MEMORIES IF WE WERE LUCKY ENOUGH TO CATCH HIM IN LIVE CONCERT

SURE WE HAD LESTER AND ZOOT AND MILES AND DUKE AND SO MANY MORE LEGENDS

BUT NO-ONE BRIDGED OUR CULTURE MORE UNIVERSALLY THAN THE UNASSUMING GIANT GETZ, WHETHER GUESTING WITH THE GOODMAN BAND, BLOWING KENTON OUT OF THE WATER , HOLIDAYING IN BRAZIL OR REACHING STRATOSPHERIC HEIGHTS ONSTAGE AT MONTREUX

LET US DISCUSS THE MAGIC OF STAN GETZ

AND DETERMINE WHY HE WAS SO GOOD



CAN WE DISCUSS THE MAGIC OF GETZ
AND ISOLATE AND MAYBE DEFINE OUR MUSICAL SOUL

Views: 60

Replies to This Discussion

This is wonderful Jon! I hope other friends here on our forum join in this discussion.

I have a difficult time speaking about Stan "the musician", as my perspective has always been from a daughter's point of view. However, I do believe that perhaps he was able to "bridge our culture so universally" because Stan had no musical barriers/blocks or prejudice inside of himself. He could find beauty and be inspired by all genres and therefore find his voice to contribute to whatever he chose. I think he could have found that voice in a Country Western tune as effortlessly as he found it playing the works of Eddie Sauter's "Focus", the Brazilian music or straight ahead Jazz.

I recently heard an interview where he was asked if he played the Bossa Nova because he thought it was viable commercially. His response was that he was as surprised as everyone else at the success of those recordings and that he had played that music simply because it was "beautiful, warm, romantic folk music".

Another thought is that Stan would become bored with playing the same thing, he never was able to find a "comfort zone" and just hang there. He was always driven to move ahead... always hearing, searching and singing what was in his soul.

“My life is music, and in some vague, mysterious and subconscious way, I have always been driven by a taut inner spring which has propelled me to almost compulsively reach for perfection in music, often—in fact, mostly—at the expense of everything else in my life.” ~Stan Getz
I am attempting to comment here with the voice of a lover of all kinds of music… good music, great music, just the music that I love and I don’t really know why! I listen to music everyday and it is everything from Hip Hop, Soul, Jazz, Blues, R&B, Easy Rock Classics, Heavy Metal, Classical, Vintage Country to some other music forms I can’t quite classify. But I definitely have a short list of favorites (a list that includes variety from Q-Tip to Stan) in heavy rotation in my mix. And now that you’ve got me thinking about it…

the one thing I have noticed about my REAL AND ABSOLUTE favorites, creators of the music that really moves me, whether it’s to dance, cry, drive, be creative or simply enjoy, is the ARTIST. The actual musician(s) themselves are amazing people. Deep human beings with lots of layers, not all of which is good, but they all seem to have a sense of genuine kindness and good somewhere in them. There is just a genuineness and love for what they do in their eyes as they sing or play that would make even someone who normally wouldn’t like that kind of music… love them or at the very least respect and appreciate what they are doing… ALL DIFFERENT KINDS OF PEOPLE. I think that’s what Stan has… so whether he was headlining (right word?), guesting with another band or collaborating….. YOU ALWAYS NOTICE STAN. And NOT because he is blowing the loudest or hardest or ‘selling it’ the most….. but just because it is… and it is there and it is special and he is special and there is TRUE AND GENUINE SOUL there. Musicians who don’t have this WON’T and CAN’T leave his kind of legacy behind because they don’t touch people as deeply.

Stan contributed a lot of truly wonderful music to the world and, Bev is going to hate me for this, but he also contributed, in some way, in a deep way, an amazing and truly kind-hearted human being to the world. And that has NOTHING to do with his music but speaks volumes, in my opinion, about him, in some way, as a human being…. Which begs my point....

All the(my) true greats, and this definitely includes Stan, are amazing human beings as well as great artists. I don’t know much about any of my favorite musicians as people, but I know they all have some really genuine souls whether they are heartfelt or heartbroken. And I don’t know much about Stan as a man, but I do know some part of him must have been very true and genuine and kind to have created (even in part) such an amazing human being as Bev. So this deep genuine soulfulness, made evident by this human contribution ;-) paired with a musical gift that is so special, no other musician since has come even close to duplicating his style or quality of play, is what makes him GREAT!!! It is very simply a wonderful combination of intangibles that give Stan his magic.

I’m so glad you posted this Jon, thank you. It was fun to think about, but difficult to write, and I’m still not sure I succeeded at getting my point across. But I am cross-eyed from looking at this computer this late. Bev, you should thank your lucky stars I spent the last hour editing down all of the wonderful things I wanted to share about you too here… but that will have to be another thread. Perhaps I’ll just have to start a discussion on how much of a truly wonderful human being you are ;-)

Thanks again Jon!
Joannah
SUCH ENLIGHTENING AND INSPIRING WORDS FROM JOANNAH AND BEV

THANK YOU SO MUCH

DOWN HERE IN HOLLOW LOGGER COUNTRY, SOMETIMES REFERRED TO AS A CULTURAL DESERT
IT IS REFRESHING AND CHALLENGING TO COMMUNICATE WITH THE REAL CULTURAL WORLD
OF CREATIVITY

ESPECIALLY DURING MY CURRENT WRITING PROJECT
WHICH DOES ATTEMPT TO INTEGRATE THE IMMORTAL SOUL MUSIC OF STAN
WITH THE LIVING CULTURE OF JAZZ

I GUESS IT IS AN IDENTITY THING
HIS MUSIC SO INTERWOVEN WITH HIS PERSONALITY
AND SO INSTANTLY INSPIRATIONAL
LIKE DUKE AND MILES

PERHAPS REFLECTING ON OUR DECAYING SOCIETY
BUT ALSO UPLIFTING AND COURAGEOUS
AND AT THE SAME TIME FULL OF HOPE AND JOY , HUMOR AND BEAUTY

I CANNOT COMMENT FOREVER BUT THANKS AGAIN FOR THE UNEXPECTED RESPONSES

STANS INCOMPARABLE MUSIC IS ETERNAL TRUTH AND BEAUTY
AND FOREVER PLAYS MY COMPUTER BACKGROUND

MERCI BEAUCOUP STAN ET BEV ET JOANNAH

JON
What a wonderful introduction to the Stan Getz magic Jon.
It is certainly that for me.
In whatever settings Stan played, the music is elevated to a higher level.
Small group, quartet, big band, with strings or just a good JATP concert,
Stan always burned. No wonder Oscar nicknamed him Stanley The Steamer.
His appeal was certainly worldwide. European audiences loved him.
Be it France, Italy, Scandinavia, Danemark, England. The numerous recordings
of live concerts and jazz festivals appearances is a testament to that.

Well I was lucky enough to see him live too. So those sounds and sights are
still with me.

Thanks Joannah and Bev for the wonderful read.
Denis
Some excellent and insightful points/thoughts from all and the short version of my thoughts regarding Stan's magic goes back to Jon's use of the word universal to describe Stan and his music. When we are talking about that which is universal in music, we are usually thinking (or feeling) something about something extraordinarily pretty or lyrical or accessible, all of which Stan gave us through his instrument and of himself. Serious jazz fans and musicians would also find the complexity in his playing; I think all great musicians carry some form of complexity in their music. It is when complexity and lyricism and beauty meet and many different people from all over the world are touched by someone's music - that, in my opinion, makes someone not only a jazz legend, but a musician worthy of and receiving widespread and universal acclaim from music fans and from peers.

A personal wish of mine would be to someday see videos of Stan, Duke, Armstrong...so many others as an important part of any library in all schools/colleges/universities having any kind of music programs.

Thanks for starting the discussion, Jon!

Marla
Hi Jon. What a great discussion you've started here.

All the contributors are wonderful to read to, especially yours Bev where you're talking about Stan having no musical barriers/blocks or prejudice inside himself. I find this a so very very important quality to have as a musician.

There is something that has to be settled inside yourself before this, and why; because this sets the quality level you're working from. The thing I'm talking about is practice. Stan Getz rehearsed 8-10 hours a day. Becoming the master he is and was as a musician is a result of hard work. He played all the "boring" stuff over and over again, and not only over and over again, but also in every single key. This made (well in my opinion) the ground for what he became.

And when this work is done you're able to receive/reach a level where the freedom becomes a part of your playing and you're able to play guided by your intuition. Bill Evans said in an interview once that knowledge has to lead the intuition, and he also said that playing as beautiful as Stan Getz was hard both physical and psychic.

When you've reach the level Stan had reached and has the kind of philosophy about music like Bev says about him having no musical barriers, then you're able to adapt something that will show in your playing so everybody can find something "familiar" (to say it "simple"). And it comes to mind that there's no "bad" music only bad musician to say it roughly - what I'm trying to say is that you have to be a very good musician to play all kinds of music and music genres good.

Another thing is that he, where ever he was in the world, made tribute to the countries he visited by playing music from the country he was in; f.ex. like the wonderful bossa albums, he also recorded tunes from the Nordic countries like "Grandfathers Waltz", national anthems, national folk-music, music for children (like lullabies) etc.etc. When he did this people instantly connected to him, they felt he loved them and that he thought they were special.

I could have written a whole chapter about this subject, because I haven't even mentioned his musical strategy, his pauses, his choose of notes, his way of sounding relaxing when the cord progression is so hard to follow that you're sitting with your mouth open can't believe you're hearing what you're hearing when he is playing. BUT this is whole new chapter so I'll stop here.

Sorry if there's a lot of wrong written words, English is not my main language. :-)

Smiles from Hilde
OH MY!!! I'm so happy to see so many of you respond to this discussion! Pumping some much needed blood back into the ole' forum!!! GREAT!!

All of your thoughts on this are so very thought provoking! WOW!

Hilde, I have never thought about what you wrote, concerning Stan's playing for the people in various countries! That is so true. He did have so much affection and respect for his audience, wherever he was playing.

So.... are you going to open a discussion (in all your free time! lol) on the musical strategy?! That would be a discussion I certainly could not contribute to, but would be so interested in hearing people's thoughts on!

Thanks to you all, and Jon again, for contributing here!
Bev

PS.... Hilde.... you AMAZE ME!! Your ENGLISH is BETTER THAN MINE!!!! SERIOUSLY!! I hope you speak Norwegian this well!!!! LOL!!! (~:

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