Jazz Reference Collection.
Drawing on Stan Getz's work for Roost and Prestige, Imagination is a CD documenting his early days as a quartet-leader, following his tumultuously successful recordings of "Summer Sequence Part IV" and "Early Autumn" with Woody Herman's Second Herd. Getz may have been nearly as young as his baby-faced good looks suggested, but there was nothing unfinished or immature about his music. All these 1949 and 1950 performances, selected from five separate sessions by label-owner Francis Dreyfus, confirm not only Getz's consummate mastery of the tenor saxophone and skill as an arranger but also his acumen as a boss: five tracks mark the recording debut of a pianist whom Getz had recently discovered--the great Horace Silver. Elsewhere there are similarly impressive contributions from pianists Al Haig, Walter Bishop and the now-forgotten Tony Aless, and, were there nothing else on offer, the CD would still be worth buying for the drumming (on 10 cuts) of the man that Getz termed 20 years later "the mighty Roy Haynes". In all, this is a discerning issue that should appeal to Getzophiles old and new, the modest playing-time notwithstanding. --Richard Palmer
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