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Ron Carter

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Ron Carter (born May 4, 1937, Ferndale, Michigan) is an American bassist. His unique sound and great swing have made him a sought after studio man — his appearances on over 2,500 albums make him one of the most-recorded bassists in history. He has recorded with artists ranging from Miles Davis and Wynton Marsalis to A Tribe Called Quest.

The epitome of class and elegance, though not stuffy, Ron Carter has been a world class bassist and cellist since the ’60s. He’s among the greatest accompanists of all time, but has also done many albums exhibiting his prodigious technique. He’s a brilliant rhythmic and melodic player, who uses everything in the bass and cello arsenal; walking lines, thick, full, prominent notes and tones, drones and strumming effects, and melody snippets. His bowed solos are almost as impressive as those done with his fingers. Carter has been featured in clothing, instrument, and pipe advertisements; he’s close to being the bass equivalent of a Duke Ellington in his mix of musical and extra-musical interests. Carter’s nearly as accomplished in classical music as jazz, and has performed with symphony orchestras all over the world. He’s almost exclusively an acoustic player; he did play electric for a short time in the late ’60s and early ’70s, but hasn’t used it in many, many years.

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