Art Works Blog

Art Works Podcast: NEA Jazz Master Ron Carter

Washington, DC

This week’s Art Works podcast is a conversation with legendary jazz bass player and cellist NEA Jazz Master Ron Carter. Carter is an elegant man: dignified, soft-spoken, deliberate---his quiet demeanor gives no hint that the man has packed so much into his career. You have to wonder when he sleeps. Numbers don’t lie---he is one of the great studio musicians with close to 2,500 albums to his credit, playing with almost every legendary jazz figure, including time with NEA Jazz Master Miles Davis’s second great quintet that included Tony Williams, and NEA Jazz Masters Wayne Shorter and Herbie Hancock. Always in great demand as a studio freelancer, Carter continued to play and tour with a variety of groups, including several all-star bands.

In addition to playing he is a composer, with more than 130 compositions to his credit, and he’s scored and arranged music for many films. He is distinguished professor of music, emeritus of the City College of New York, and has written several acclaimed books about playing the bass. This would be success enough for any man, but Carter, who was trained as a classical musician, never left his musical roots. In addition to an extraordinary---and extraordinarily busy---career in jazz, he continues to perform and record classical music.

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