Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Ignore other reviews, and take a listen
D. J Pigott | Perth, Western Australia | 02/12/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Ignore both the other reviews (including the one that is repeated) as they are an insult to both Carter and Alpert. (Besides, only a moron would compare the music to either a laugh hour show or an Alpert arrangement, ditto someone who thought this playing was sloppy or fumbling).
Carter is superb on the piccolo bass, and the arrangements are what he wanted. At its best, this record is a wonderful exposition of a brilliant musician at his finest. At its worse (which isn't bad) it sounds overproduced.
If you don't like the arrangements, then check out Carter's Piccolo. Or shut up."
Setting The 'Record' Straight
Robert M. Freedman | Gilbert, AZ USA | 04/06/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"1. The only responsibility borne by Ron for these arrangements is that many years ago he was kind enough to hire me to write them. If anyone wants to throw spears, look for me at the center of the target - not Mr. Carter.
2. Despite the fact that the album was produced, recorded and mixed by two men with huge reputations in the business (neither of them being Ron) the excellent woodwind players on the session were very poorly recorded and mixed. They deserved better representation on the final product.
3. As he always has done, Ron set out to explore new musical territory with this project. Unlike some other innovators he didn't slash & burn in the process, he built new things on top of established values and practices.
4. I'm not qualified to lecture on capital-a "Art", but I would like to suggest that no-one is obliged to like a creative person's output. Musicians try stuff. Sometimes listeners like it - sometimes they don't. The former doesn't necessarily make the work good and the latter . . . you get the idea.
5. If you do feel the need to publicly bash something, do a little research (e.g., the arrangements are credited to - or, if you will, blamed on - me in the album's liner notes) before firing your salvo.
6. Finally, I rated the recording with five stars essentially to add some balance to some of the other comments which might have been better thought-out before they were submitted. Otherwise I would not normally undertake to evaluate, in this type of forum, something on which i'd worked."
It's a little different
Eric J. Anderson | Ankeny, Iowa | 08/30/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I bought this when it was first released -- on the recommendation of Stereo Review, as I recall. The woodwinds don't naturally mesh that well with the traditional jazz bass, piano, and drums. But Ron Carter is hardly a conventional soloist, and he's playing an unconventional instrument himself.
I can't say that this is the pinnacle of jazz, but I always found it listenable, and I have a warm spot in my heart for it. It is generally melodic. The title track makes me smile. Most of the tracks give me a very positive vibe. Not actually comedic, as one reviewer suggested, but happy. The soloing? It may not be transcendent, but it's interesting enough.
Perhaps you just have to let it grow on you. I didn't own that many albums when I first bought this, so I probably gave it more spins on the turntable than if I had bought it today. You'll have to weigh how much you like Ron Carter against the chance that you may not like this little experiment. Honestly, I didn't find it that unconventional. The bass sound is very forward, very confrontational, if you will. It isn't always exceptionally pretty. But for me it was a fun little album."