Gary Giddins
August 30, 1991 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Vintage Getz, Volume 1

Current Status
In Season

We gave it a B

By 1983, when this concert was shot, a performance by the surpassingly lyrical tenor saxophonist Stan Getz (who died this past June) invariably combined cool ballads, cerebral modern pieces composed by his pianist, Jim McNeely, and a perfunctory nod to his monster bossa nova hits of 20 years earlier, ”Desafinado” and ”The Girl From Ipanema.” Stan Getz, Volume 1, played in the open air of California’s wine country, is uneven — Getz seems dispirited for much of Volume 2. There are fine moments, though: McNeely’s waltz ”From the Heart” and Miles Davis’ ”Sippin’ at Bells” on the first volume and Billy Strayhorn’s ”Lush Life” and ”Blood Count” on the second. Sadly, the presentation is marred by nervous editing that bleeds one image into another, never letting you see anything for more than a few seconds. Another debit: Since the music totals about 100 minutes, this concert easily could have been contained on one cassette. B

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