Ron Carter’s elegant, sophisticated and delicate tone, as well as his extraordinary sense of timing, have informed generations of bassists and have had a tremendous impact on the musical genre as a whole.
My Personal Songbook is the first recording of the grand master’s original compositions performed by an extended orchestra to be released. This exceptional recording took place in January 2013, when Carter appeared with The WDR Big Band in Cologne. Three acclaimed concerts with The WDR Big Band in Geneva, Zürich, and Essen followed and strengthened the master bassist’s wish to extend the collaboration.
Naturally, The WDR Big Band acceded to his wish, because apart from the fact that Carter is one of the leading bassists in the history of jazz, the musical vibes between the WDR Big Band and the famed guest soloist were highly compatible from the start. One may wonder why such a diligent musician as Carter did not work with the large format before; it was only in 2011 that he formed a big band of his own. With the WDR Big Band and the album My Personal Songbook, he goes further in presenting himself as a brilliant double bass player and innovative soloist.
Being cast with truly exquisite soloists, the WDR Big Band is a perfect match for Carter, who is full of praises: “It honors a radio station to insist on this music and to make such a large band format happen. Being professional, flexible and having the brilliant musicality of these musicians also add to this project.” Carter chose ten pieces for the project, which were, and still are, of tremendous influence in his life. Richard DeRosa, principal conductor of The WDR Big Band, contributed the arrangements for his orchestra. The result is a sound which pays attention to the lush big band tone as well as to the sophisticated solo parts and allows both to fully bloom. An extra highlight is the additional DVD with tracks as well as film footage.