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Greatest Hits

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Album Review

In the mid-1970s, Gato Barbieri moved from the often incendiary post-bop for which he was known to a slicker, more commercial blend of jazz and pop. Jazz critics were quick to denounce the tenor saxophonist as a sellout and tear A&M releases like Caliente and Ruby, Ruby to shreds, but in fact, some of Barbieri's pop-jazz/crossover output from that period (much of it produced by Herb Alpert) wasn't without artistic merit. Released in 1998, Greatest Hits draws on those albums as well as 1978's Tropico and 1979's Euphoria, and reminds us that pop-flavored jazz can be done tastefully. Lush recordings such as "Latin Lady," "She Is Michelle" and "Behind the Rain" aren't in a class with the great modal post-bop he'd provided for Flying Dutchman and Impulse, but Barbieri was still playing with plenty of passion, soul and creativity. Also enjoyable are the tenor saxman's seductive interpretations of Marvin Gaye's 1976 hit "I Want You" and the standard "Speak Low." Some of the material is too arranged for its own good, and Barbieri's annoying pseudo-disco take on "Poinciana (Song of the Tree)" is pure schlock. But in general, this CD (which spans 1976-1979) is decent pop-jazz with integrity.

Customer Reviews


When Gato's "Eupopa" hit the sound waves in the Pacific Northwest, the telephone lines were jammed at the jazz station for days on end begging to know who and what was the name of the song just played (often). Our jazz station does not announce each song at the beginning or end and folk were not listening closely when they announced several at once. Everything Gato records is primo but "Europa" is Extra Primo!


Fiesta is one of the best songs ever written... This enitre CD is deifintly worth 10 dollars Great Artist also... one of the best sax players

Love it!

His best album!!!


Born: November 28, 1932 in Rosario, Argentina

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Gato Barbieri was the second Argentine musician to make a significant impact upon modern jazz -- the first being Lalo Schifrin, in whose band Barbieri played. His story is that of an elongated zigzag odyssey between his homeland and North America. He started out playing to traditional Latin rhythms in his early years, turning his back on his heritage to explore the jazz avant-garde in the '60s, reverting to South American influences in the early '70s, playing pop and fusion in the late '70s, only...
Full Bio