- Audio CD (25 May 1999)
- Number of Discs: 1
- Format: Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered
- Label: Verve
- ASIN: B0000047CY
- Other Editions: Audio CD | Vinyl | MP3 Download
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 263,353 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
Focus: Remastered Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered
|Price:||£9.09 & FREE UK Delivery on orders dispatched by Amazon over £20. Delivery Details|
|Listen Now with Amazon Music|
|Amazon Music Unlimited|
|New from||Used from|
AutoRip is available only for eligible CDs and vinyl sold by Amazon EU Sarl (but does not apply to gift orders or PrimeNow orders). See Terms and Conditions for full details, including costs which may apply for the MP3 version in case of order returns or cancellations.
- Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
- Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
- Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
- Dispatch to this address when you check out
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
I will ship by EMS or SAL items in stock in Japan. It is approximately 7-14days on delivery date. You wholeheartedly support customers as satisfactory. Thank you for you seeing it.
It is unlikely that anyone will ever bridge the gap between jazz and classical music with the success that Focus did. Getz regarded it as the most important recording of his life. Eddie Sauter, unique in being first a jazz writer and then a trained classical composer, wrote a series of seven pieces for a small chamber orchestra. He wrote parts for Getz's tenor. Getz wasn't happy with the classical notation and decided to improvise without written music. He had a photographic musical memory and he memorised the music instantly when the chamber group played it through for him. He filled the gaps that had been left for him with the most sublime improvisations that you could imagine. Sauter's writing had been brilliant and the consummation of tenor and chamber group is one of the great moments in jazz. During the period of the recordings Getz's mother died. The chamber unit recorded "Her" in his absence and he came in a day later and improvised to the tape. He obviously had his mother in mind and the result is incredibly moving. The long coda to the piece is one of the most beautiful and heart-stopping passages in the whole of jazz. --Steve Voce
Top Customer Reviews
The arrangements are powerful in their own right and compliment Getz's playing. The completely improvised drum work by Roy Haynes is also excellent (no drum part was written). I assume that Sauter's background in jazz enabled hime to understand how an improvised lead would fit around the strings. It all works perfectly.
Lots of artists are decribed as being great without any thought about what true greatness is all about. I have always liked Getz, but been more inclined to listen to others such as Zoot Sims and Sonny Rollins. However, this album is so surprising, different and plain superb that I think it demonstrates that Getz was perhaps the greatest tenor player of all. I am mystified that he only ever recorded one record like this.
There are a number of albums that are mandatory in any proper jazz collection and this is one of them.
As a tenor player Stan needs little introduction. He is a master of his instrument. His solos have a thoughtful, almost meditative approach. No unnecessary notes or showboating, he looks for melody and tone and if nothing else, he achieves that here with playing suggestive of great technique and taste.
The string section provides an interesting back-drop to Stan's efforts. Interestingly, there are some fairly acerbic tunes such as 'I'm Late, I'm Late' and 'Night Rider' in which Stan has to negotiate some fairly tricky rhythmic passages in his soloing. He does this of course without bluster or sounding like he is struggling to keep up. You'd expect some lusher more romantic pieces on an album of this type and you'd be right. Tracks like 'Pan' and 'I Remember When' are rather beautiful - and here Stan fits in very well. Stan can play the stuff with quirky time signatures and fast changing chord sequences , but he is really at home on the ballad material and this is were Stan's tone takes over and caresses the ears.
The album feels like it could and should have been more then a simple sax and strings experiment. Stan is constantly in the forefront and the strings are rather too recessed. Meaning that Stan has no foil to complement or compete against. He is allowed to float around (which he admittedly does to great effect) without the challenge of another soloist to bring out the best in his playing.Read more ›
Apparently Getz had little time to prepare for the recording, but that's one of the contributory factors in the profundity of his playing. On the opening 'I'm Late, I'm Late' he's a man inspired, seemingly eating up the difficult musical terrain and coming on with some soul, which in this reviewer's opinion wasn't a quality he showed all the time.
The strings could be a little cloying on 'I Remember When' if it wasn't for Getz's work, which is that of a man bemoaning the limitations of mortality. This can be said without setting off the hyperbole alarm by the way...
Unique not only within Getz's legacy but also within the considerably bigger canon of jazz on record 'Focus' is pretty much timeless.
Eddie Sauter's string writing for Focus is much more varied - sometimes deeply romantic, as in Her or I remember When, sometimes surprisingly acerbic as in I'm Late or Pan. And there is real interaction with the soloist, all the more surprising since, according to the liner notes, Getz's performances of all but the first track were added after the string parts were recorded. Sauter's mastery of this essentially classical style is particlarly impressive for someone previously known as an arranger for big bands - Benny Goodman pre war and his joint venture with Bill Finegan in the Fifties.
Getz is of course best known for his later bossa nova discs, but for me this is his supreme achievement. Indeed I would argue, as the Bond song puts it, that in this particular genre not only does nobody do it better, nobody does it half as well.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Perhaps rather late to review an album that I've owned for over ten years and that was recorded in 1961. Read morePublished on 26 Dec. 2014 by R. Bawden jazz fan
I love this. It is the ONLY recording with strings I can bear to listen to. The CD is mainly endless melodic improvisation that Getz excels at and the 'strings' are used almost as... Read morePublished on 24 Oct. 2014 by Bren
Personally I really like this music. It may not be everyone's genre of jazz but it is worth listening too. Overall this music is a personal choice of course. Read morePublished on 17 Oct. 2013 by K. Slater