2018 Japanese CD reissue.
One of his best albums from a very creative and innovative period, In Stockholm is wonderful almost in spite of itself. Getz recorded this date for Norman Granz in December of 1955, after returning from a several-months-long period of recuperation in North Africa due to a crippling illness -- the combination of pleurisy and pneumonia. Getz is in the company of three Swedish jazzmen: pianist Bengt Hallberg, bassist Gunnar Johnson, and drummer Anders Burman. The program is made up of standards and a mix of ballads and faster bop-flavored tunes.
The bluesy "Indiana" kicks the date off with a brief solo tenor intro. Getz's trademark tone is warm, rich, and full. His real foil on the track is Johnson, whose bop playing is on the money. Hallberg is knottier and very formal, and Burman is merely keeping time, but it hardly matters since it's a blues. The ballads here are what work best, however, as evidenced by "Without a Song," "I Don't Stand a Ghost of a Chance with You," "Everything Happens to Me," and the utterly lovely reading of the Yip Harburg-Harold Arlen tune "Over the Rainbow."
The set closes on two uptempo numbers, the sprightly "Get Happy," introduced with a solo by Getz in full-on blues mode, and the bubbly, shuffling "Jeepers Creepers," which sounds breezy, light, and airy. The thing is, however, that Getz's lyricism is at a peak here. He can solo right inside the melody with his phrasing, yet accent the actual songs these tunes were taken from. This is top-notch Getz all the way through.
Thom Jurek ~ AllMusicGuide
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