Stan Getz began studying the saxophone at age 13 and made his professional debut at 15. He played with the bands of Jack Teagarden, Stan Kenton, Jimmy Dorsey, and Benny Goodman, and he made some recordings under his own name in 1946. Getz’s breakthrough came the following year, when he was hired for Woody Herman’s Second Herd orchestra. As a member of an unusual sax section—three tenors and a baritone—Getz was one of the Herman band’s “Four Brothers,” who specialized in cool-toned modern jazz. Noted Getz solos during his tenure with Herman include his turn on the song “"Four Brothers"” (1947) and, especially, his celebrated performance of “"Early Autumn"” (1948). His tone was featherlight, vibratoless, and pure and showed the influence of his idol, Lester Young. Within a few years, Getz would perfect his own somewhat detached style, the cool jazz characteristic of the West Coast jazz movement, in which overt emotionalism was held in check.
Stan's father had many jobs, but he wasn't aggressive by nature and was thus often unemployed. Stan's mother was a more demanding person and pushed her first son hard to study. She hoped he would become a doctor or a professor and took extra care of him, setting straight “A” standards for his schoolwork. Stan worked hard in school. During hot Bronx summers, Stan developed a love for swimming at Crotona Park. At this same park, he sold sunflower seeds in two-cent packets that he had purchased in bulk. Stan had his Bar Mitzvah in 1940. Neither Stan nor Robert had much spiritual grounding. Between them, they would have four wives and seven children, none of whom were raised Jewish.
Stan finished 6th grade near the top of his class and was accepted into an accelerated program where he would combine 7th and 8th grades into one academic year. He was attracted to musical instruments, and he pestered people until he could try whatever instrument came within his view. He was playing the harmonica by age 12 and bass in Jr. High School. Early indications off his innate talent became apparent with his ability to play new tunes he would hear- picking them out on the piano or his harmonica. He conducted a fantasy opera orchestra in front of the radio. He would hum all of the famous Benny Goodman clarinet solos from memory. As he studied music, he was instantly good at sight-reading and seemed to have a photographic memory, as well as an instinctive sense of pitch and rhythm.
This double-bill recording features the remarkable tenor saxophonist Stan Getz, along with Richie Cole's band Alto Madness. On this DVD, these two amazing artists share with you their own unique style in the ambient setting of the renowned Harvest jazz Festival at the Paul Masson Vineyards in California.