The year 1969 was a time of explosion and implosion in jazz. Expansively, the music was in the heat of a worldwide free jazz boom, domestically Miles Davis was fusing jazz with rock and funk, and the soul-jazz minor revolution was getting new wings in the form of its reliance on funk themes. Stan Getz couldn't care less. Didn't We is an unabashedly romantic and even sentimental collection of American popular songs given the Getz ballad and midtempo treatment via his gorgeous smoky tenor and an orchestra lushly arranged and conducted by Johnnie Pate. Here are ten songs given deluxe emotional readings with inimitable phrasing by Getz, who was at his height as a melodic improviser here. Whether it be the now legendary version of Jimmy Webb's title track, Goffin/King's "Go Away Little Girl," Johnny Mandel's "Mandy Is Two," Benny Golson's "I Remember Clifford," or Mercer/Mandel's "Emily," Getz's deep well of lyricism elevates these songs above their former contexts and replaces them in the jazz pantheon with grace, verve, and aplomb.
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AllMusic Review by Thom Jurek