90th Birthday Tribute to Stan Getz
Re-imagining the music from Captain Marvel with Billy Childs, Scott Colley & Peter Erskine
An Exclusive Monterey Jazz Festival Presentation
In 1972, saxophonist Stan Getz recorded the album Captain Marvel, an all-star affair with some of the biggest names in jazz: Chick Corea, Stanley Clarke, Airto Moreira and Tony Williams. Getz, a staunch and fluid saxophonist in the acoustic realm, had already been a pioneer in bringing bossa nova to a wider audience for a decade, but his involvement with Latin-jazz hearkened back to the mid-40s with Stan Kenton, and Woody Herman’s “Second Herd.” Getz had won four Grammys by 1964, including one for Album of the Year for the seminal Getz/Gilberto album that had launched thousands of versions of “The Girl From Ipanema.”
But in 1972, Getz, now 45 and mid-career, found himself riding his third wave of Latin-influenced jazz—this time, fusion—with the likes of Chick Corea’s Return to Forever and others. Joining forces with the pianist (and with Chick bringing RTF members Airto and Stanley Clarke with him), Corea and Getz settled on adding the explosive ex-Miles Davis drummer Tony Williams to round out the group. The result was Captain Marvel, one of the best recordings of the decade, and one of the defining jazz records of Getz’s career—a meeting of the minds in a session that is brimming with energy and Corea’s soon-to-be classic RTF repertoire and the youthful vigor of the other members (Clarke was 20; Williams 27; and Corea and Airto both 30.) Five of the six songs, penned by Corea ("La Fiesta," "Five Hundred Miles High," "Captain Marvel," "Times Lie," and "Day Waves"), were the launching pad for a revitalised Getz, showing that the soft bossa nova of the last decade had not dimished his power—and with the vituostic musicians alongside him, the songs ignited.
Columbia Records held Captain Marvel in the vaults for two years, but upon its release in 1974, Getz's addition the fusion era (now 45 years old itself, as old as Getz was at the time of its recording), became a watershed moment in his career.
Saxophonist Joel Frahm, one of the unsung heroes of his generation, has teamed up with some of the premier jazz musicians of today—pianist Billy Childs, bassist Scott Colley, and drummer Peter Erskine—to reinterpret and reimagine Captain Marvel, to celebrate what would have been Getz’s 90th birthday in 2017.
Frahm, born just three years before Captain Marvel was recorded, is one of the biggest sounding tenors on the scene today, and his pairing with some of the pioneers of the 70s, 80s and 90s, round out the lineup. Pianist Billy Childs is a genre-blender who has pushed boundaries through his commission pieces and small-group works since he was on the stage in the 1970s with Freddie Hubbard and J.J. Johnson. Bassist Scott Colley, on the road since the mid-80s, has performed with a wide variety of iconic artists from Carmen McRae, Dizzy Gillespie, Jim Hall, John Scofield, Herbie Hancock, to dozens of others, and is one of the first-call musicians working today. Drummer Peter Erskine, himself a Stan Kenton member at the time Captain Marvel was recorded, was a major contributor to the fusion genre with Weather Report beginning in 1978, and is one of the top drummers in multiple genres.