Walk or wander into the world of jazz. Ron Carter is there. His reputation in the music world is peerless. He stylishly accompanies any player or group and, without breaking stride, performs with stunning virtuosity as a soloist. His work is rich in detail, pure in sound, and technically impressive. His long list of accolades as a performer is unprecedented; he may be the most popular bassist there is.
A lean six feet four inches with a mixture of pride and courtliness, Ron displays an elegant calm on stage as well as off. He has created music with consummate skill for more than forty-five years, apparently without rumpling his tasteful suits or raising a serious sweat. In the early 1960s, he performed throughout the United States in nightclubs and concert halls with Eric Dolphy, Jaki Byard, and Wes Montgomery, then toured Europe with Cannonball Adderley. He was a member of Miles Davis’s now classic quintet from 1963 to 1968, along with Herbie Hancock, Tony Williams, and Wayne Shorter.
Ron was among the few bassists who continued to play acoustic bass when many turned to electric bass. “It was a conscious choice,” he says. “I felt a responsibility to present a viable alternative to the popular electric sound.”
One of Ron’s chief traits is that he creates bass lines so harmonically and rhythmically rich that soloists must go far to respond to his challenge. As he puts it: “A good bassist determines the direction of any band.” Often Ron uses gonglike tones and glissandos in his work. Once his exclusive trademark, these sounds have now become part of every modern bassist’s vocabulary.
With more than 2,500 albums to his credit, Carter may well be the most recorded bassist around. He is equally successful as a leader and a supportive collaborator, anchoring extraordinary and varied sessions with commanding technique and impeccable taste. He has recorded with many of the greatest names in music: Oliver Nelson, Tommy Flanagan, Gil Scott-Heron, Gil Evans, Lena Horn, James Brown, Coleman Hawkins, Bill Evans, Carlos Santana, Aretha Franklin, Sonny Rollins, Paul Simon, Janis Ian, Bette Midler, Benny Goodman, George Benson, B.B. King, Eric Gale, Johnny Hodges, Antonio Carlos Jobim, The Kronos Quartet, Dexter Gordon, Helen Merrill, J.J. Johnson, Benny Golson, Sir Roland Hanna, Stan Getz, and Jessye Norman.
Ron’s many awards include citations by the Jaoan All-Star Jazz Poll and the Swing Journal Readers Poll. He was voted Outstanding Bassist of the Decade by the Detroit News and Jazz Bassist of the Year by Downbeat magazine. He was also named Most Valuable Player, Acoustic Bass, by the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences. His solo bass recording of the Bach Cello Suites on compact disc was certified Gold in 1988.
Ron and Party Of The Century:
A REAL LIVING LEGEND... Ron Carter is A LEGEND. Everything started in the weirdest way possible when Giorgio took the courage to send an e-mail to Ron's entourage while digging his official website.
It wasn't more than a hopeful try in which the little italian guy was trying to explain what was going on with PArty Of The Century and how fantastic would have been involving Ron in one of the track.
Till the day Ron showed up with a mail to Giorgio saying he was interested to the project and the two started to talk a bit better about what was going on with POTC !
Mr. Carter was used to that kind of e-mail but spotted in Giorgio something different... his contagious enthusiasm brought the legendary jazz star going like: "Here's the deal... you're totally insane, I will play on your record but I want to know you!!! Come here in New York, let's make some music and go out for a dinner" !
Now... as you can probably imagine, Giorgio's mind immediately a jumped on the first plane heading right to the Big Apple!
But before doing it, a studio had to be found!! So Giorgio called back Ron asking if he had any preference about the recording place, and Ron gave him the number of a well known studio in New York City! Giorgio was all happy till the moment he discovered that place was fully booked! Oh Lord...
So he started to search for another studio, possibly nearer Ron's house and came up with SKYLINE STUDIOS (that later became a the POTC New York Headquarter). Giorgio so sent an e-mail to the studio explaining what was going on and got a reply from a guy called Jonathan Mover! Gee... The two started to chat about the project and Jonathan wanted to know more and get more involved! Ok this is another story, but at the end of that email messaging Giorgio didn't only find a great studio to track Ron Carter, he did even involve his owner to play drums on one of the POTC tracks!!!
So problems solved... Giorgio wrote back to Ron 5 days before leaving for New York City telling if he was happy about the studio choice. TERROR... He didn't get any answer from MR. Carter... time was getting close to the recording and still no trace about Ron's reply!
Giorgio left home, heading to the airport still not knowing if Ron would have done it there... Took the risk and as soon as the plane landed he found Ron's e-mail saying everything was alright! Yeayyy
Ron played his legendary upright bass on the track and then, together with Jonathan Mover and his girl they all went out for a fantastic dinner! Can you believe? RON already booked his favorite italian restaurant in New York City ! That's been the beginning of a fantastic friendship.
Ron Carter has been among the first people to listen to the final master, since Giorgio went to visit him soon after the mastering session with Ted Jensen at Sterling Sound studios.
Ron Carter played a fantastic bass track on the song:
Studio Sessions for POTC :
Ron Carter is featured in a fantastic interview in the POTC DVD, don't miss it!
Wanna know more about Ron Carter?