Monday, August 29, 2011

Carter's Big Band, Vuckovich/Hamilton Project - Bob Stewart

Throughout his illustrious career, the legendary Ron Carter has played it all-jumping in headlong as an integral member of Miles Davis' classic '60s quintet, anchoring the groove for almost every CTI Records session in the '70s, then launching into multifarious new projects, including his cello-infused, chamber jazz nonet and his piano-guitar-bass trio. But in his lifelong calling to find the right notes, Carter had never recorded a big-band album. So, the time was ripe for the 73-year-old maestro of the upright bass to break new ground. The result is the delightful and swinging disc -- "Ron Carter's Great Big Band" -- set into motion by esteemed arranger Bob Freedman and featuring an all-star cast of supporting musicians.

The New York Times says, "Larry Vuckovich is a fleet-fingered bebopper who can also play sultry, big-chorded blues." Nat Hentoff of Downbeat describes saxophonist Scott Hamilton as, " of those improvisers whose music defines swing." The two are partnered on Vuckovich's new offering -- "Somethin' Special" -- which honors the masters who inspired Vuckovich when he first began playing jazz. The recording grew out of a Northern California tour Vuckovich helped arrange for Hamilton and also features the pianist's hard-swinging East Coast rhythm team along with legendary West Coast tenor player Noel Jewkes.

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