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Sweet Rain

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Album Review

One of Stan Getz's all-time greatest albums, Sweet Rain was his first major artistic coup after he closed the book on his bossa nova period, featuring an adventurous young group that pushed him to new heights in his solo statements. Pianist Chick Corea, bassist Ron Carter, and drummer Grady Tate were all schooled in '60s concepts of rhythm-section freedom, and their continually stimulating interplay helps open things up for Getz to embark on some long, soulful explorations (four of the five tracks are over seven minutes). The neat trick of Sweet Rain is that the advanced rhythm section work remains balanced with Getz's customary loveliness and lyricism. Indeed, Getz plays with a searching, aching passion throughout the date, which undoubtedly helped Mike Gibbs' title track become a standard after Getz's tender treatment here. Technical perfectionists will hear a few squeaks on the LP's second half (Getz's drug problems were reputedly affecting his articulation somewhat), but Getz was such a master of mood, tone, and pacing that his ideas and emotions are communicated far too clearly to nit-pick. Corea's spare, understated work leaves plenty of room for Getz's lines and the busily shifting rhythms of the bass and drums, heard to best effect in Corea's challenging opener "Litha." Aside from that and the title track, the repertoire features another Corea original ("Windows"), the typically lovely Jobim tune "O Grande Amor," and Dizzy Gillespie's Latin-flavored "Con Alma." The quartet's level of musicianship remains high on every selection, and the marvelously consistent atmosphere the album evokes places it among Getz's very best. A surefire classic.

Customer Reviews

Timeless Classic

Getz is at his lyrical best here, inspired by a terrific rhythm section: the tuneful Ron Carter, the subtle and persuasive Grady Tate, and a young and hot Chick Corea. When I bought the lp in 1968 this was the first place I had heard of Chick, and his musicianship then, as now, was non pareil: a muscular lyricism that particularly shines in Latin tunes. I wore this record out as an lp, and a cassette. So lovely that it became both a foreground and a background for my life. Buy it. Turn the lights low or light candles and soak in it. . .

This Is It! Getz, Chick Corea, Ron Carter, Grady Tate at Their Best!

One of the all-time greatest Getz recordings. I first heard it in 1967. On the second or third play, I knew I had a classic. Getz's performance, as well as the rest of the band's, is hot, free, and lyrical -- not an easy combination to sustain. The band's beautiful treatment of Michael Gibb's classic, Sweet Rain, is an added bonus to a date that defines elegance and thoughtful, synergistic interplay among musicians who are among the best of the best.

Getz Underrated

We all know about Stan Getz. We all know he made bossa nova records that made him very rich. What we know less about Getz is his early swing/bebop period which is nothing short of excellent. His early Lester Young/Charlie Parker sound was at the top of the elite few sophisticated saxophone masters in the 50's.

After his famous bossa period, Getz made this gem, in my opinion his masterpiece. There is not a note that does not sound alive with a certain clairvoyance only found in certain geniuses. I also hear Stan stretching in a way few records show him doing, putting him right in the mix with similar late 60's post-bop musicians of this period. Wayne Shorter, Joe Henderson, etc. But Stan came before those cats. Few seem to remember this in this day and age. He was one of the pioneers of the very music he participates in here. And it shows, in every note. What a great band to inspire him!

Stan might not be en vogue at the moment, but it's only a matter of time before his playing becomes the "in" thing again. I predict it will happen in a similar way that it has happened with the resurgence of interest in Warne Marsh, one of Getz's contemporaries. This album will surely lead the way.


Born: February 2, 1927 in Philadelphia, PA

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

One of the all-time great tenor saxophonists, Stan Getz was known as "The Sound" because he had one of the most beautiful tones ever heard. Getz, whose main early influence was Lester Young, grew to be a major influence himself and to his credit he never stopped evolving. Getz had the opportunity to play in a variety of major swing big bands while a teenager due to the World War II draft. He was with Jack Teagarden (1943) when he was just 16, followed by stints with Stan Kenton (1944-1945), Jimmy...
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