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Ron Carter: Dear Miles

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The press release accompanying the advance copy of this recording contains a quote from Ron Carter: “I wasn’t ready to do an album like this before, for fear of getting swallowed up by the Miles tribute aura.” There was little chance of that. A musician with Carter’s strengths is unlikely to be lost in the backwash of anyone’s legacy. Even when he worked with Davis through much of the 1960s, Carter’s drive, tonal accuracy and imagination of line insured that the bassist was not obscured in the glare of the trumpeter’s stardom. He was the connection that secured Tony Williams’ edgy drumming and Herbie Hancock’s harmonic questing, and his power made him a presence in the Davis quintet.

This may be Carter’s first CD formally tied to the Davis mystique, but he has hardly avoided being associated with the man’s music. He was a part of the V.S.O.P. group that in various incarnations memorialized Miles. On his previous CDs he has recorded several tunes associated with his former boss, including “Oleo,” “There is No Greater Love,” “There’s a Boat That’s Leaving Soon For New York,” his own “Eighty-One” and two that appear again here, “Someday My Prince Will Come” and “My Funny Valentine.”

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