Sunday, June 11, 2006

41. Stan Getz and Joao Gilberto - Getz/Gilberto (1963)





















Track Listing

1. Girl From Ipanema
2. Doralice
3. Para Machuchar Meu Coracao
4. Desafinado
5. Corcovado (Quiet Nights Of Quiet Stars)
6. So Danco Samba
7. O Grande Amor
8. Vivo Sonhando (Dreamer)

Review

If you've read my review of Jazz Samba earlier on you know that this is the album that I've been expecting as the much better Getz Bossa Nova project. Firstly it has lyrics, and they are lovely. It's the kind of album which is worth learning Portuguese just to actually get it. Corcovado and Girl From Ipanema both have English verses, and although Astrud Gilberto's voice makes up for it, they are a pale reflection of the Brazilian lyrics. The main singer here is João Gilberto, who has a beautifully unsure voice which adds to the sentiment of the mostly plaintive songs in this album. And yes I knew all the lyrics by heart before even reviewing this. This is bread and butter in Portugal and even more in Brazil.

You might have thought that this would be seen by Brazilians as inauthentic American reworkings, but it fact it never was. This is because the only American person here is Getz. You have the great Jobim on piano, and João and Astrud Gilberto singing. And of course Girl From Ipanema has become a standard elevator/hotel lobby song, this does not mean that it isn't a great, great song. Frankly, however, the rest of the album is probably a more convincing argument for the beauty of Bossa Nova precisely because it hasn't been done to death and reproduced in insane amounts by all the lounge acts that you can think of. Ipanema is, however an integral part of this album, and along with Corcovado and Desafinado one of the big songs to come out of this album, but in fact all the other songs are equally as great.

Frankly, there isn't much to criticise here. In an evolution from Jazz Samba, this album has become much more heartfelt and beautiful, precisely because of the addition of Brazilian performers, who feel this music like Byrd and Getz could never do. Even Getz's performance is improved here due to the pace imposed on him by the other performers, the whole sense of rythm is much tighter. And although Getz does some really nice Sax playing, the Gilbertos are the real stars of the show, as are Jobim's compositions. Getz only gets top billing because he is the American guy making a record for the American market.

If you don't know it, you don't deserve to live. Stream it from Napster or buy it from Amazon UK or US.

Track Highlights

1. Desafinado
2. Doralice
3. Para Machucar Meu Coração
4. Só Danço Samba

Final Grade

10/10

Trivia

On the Album from Wiki:

Its release created a bossa nova craze in the U.S., and subsequently internationally. It brought together saxophonist Stan Getz, who had already performed the genre on his LP Jazz Samba, João Gilberto (one of the creators of the style), and Jobim, a celebrated Brazilian songwriter, who wrote most of the songs in the album. It became one of the best-selling jazz albums of all times, and turned singer Astrud Gilberto, who sang on the track of "The Girl from Ipanema" and "Corcovado", into an international sensation.

In 2003, the album was ranked number 454 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.

On Girl From Ipanema from Wikipedia

"The Girl from Ipanema" ("Garota de Ipanema") is considered the best-known bossa nova song ever written, and was a worldwide hit in the mid-1960s. It was written in 1962, with music by Antonio Carlos Jobim and Portuguese lyrics by Vinicius de Moraes with English lyrics written later by Norman Gimbel.

It is often claimed to be the second-most recorded popular song in history, topped only by The Beatles' "Yesterday". The first commercial recording was in 1962, by Pery Ribeiro. The version performed by Astrud Gilberto, along with João Gilberto and Stan Getz, from the 1963 album Getz/Gilberto, became an international hit. Numerous recordings have been used in movies, often as an elevator music cliché.

The song was inspired by Heloísa Eneida Menezes Paes Pinto (now Helô Pinheiro), an 18-year-old girl who lived on Montenegro street in the fashionable Ipanema district of Rio de Janeiro. Every day, she would stroll past the popular "Veloso" bar-cafe on the way to the beach, attracting the attention of regulars Jobim and Moraes.

The song was originally composed for a musical comedy entitled Dirigível (Blimp), which was a work in progress of Vinicius de Moraes. The original title was "Menina que Passa" ("The Girl Who Passes by"), and the famous first verse was completely different.

In Revelação: a verdadeira Garota de Ipanema (Revealed: The Real Girl from Ipanema) Moraes wrote that she was:

"o paradigma do bruto carioca; a moça dourada, misto de flor e sereia, cheia de luz e de graça mas cuja a visão é também triste, pois carrega consigo, a caminho do mar, o sentimento da que passa, da beleza que não é só nossa — é um dom da vida em seu lindo e melancólico fluir e refluir constante."

which roughly translates to:

'"the exemplar of the raw Carioca: a golden-tanned girl, a mixture of flower and mermaid, full of brightness and grace, but with a touch of sadness, in that she carries with her, on her route to the sea, the feeling of that which passes by, of the beauty that is not ours alone — it is a gift of life in its constant, beautiful and sad ebb and flow."

Today, "Montenegro Street" is called "Vinicius de Moraes Street", and the "Veloso Bar" is named "A Garota de Ipanema". There is also a "Garota de Ipanema" Park in the nearby Arpoador neighborhood.

1 comment:

Shu said...

A great album. I'm really enjoying this one. Thanks for the review.