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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The Bassist Is the Quarterback: An Examination of Ron Carter’s Improvised Performance in Different Contexts
by Hong, Seungyoung, M.M., The William Paterson University of New Jersey, 2020, 116; 28024121
Abstract (Summary)

The purpose of this study is to better understand the process of bassist Ron Carter’s effective bass accompaniment in different contexts. Using extensive and detailed transcriptions of selected performances, this study examines Carter’s playing in the contexts of several versions of the jazz standards “Autumn Leaves” and “Round Midnight.” The analysis examines 1) the strategies of Carter’s bass lines, and 2) the functions and purposes of his bass lines for situational expressions in improvisation. The analyses show the relationships between Carter’s improvised bass performance and their contexts in the ensembles, and also discover the effectiveness of four strategies in diverse situations: 1) Variety, 2) Similarity, 3) Specificity and 4) Simplicity. These strategies fell into three categories: 1) Authority and Creativity, 2) Reactivity and Flexibility, and Continuity/Consistency and Responsibility. This study reveals that the musical context is one of the strong determining factors for effective accompaniment and reveals Carter’s very strong influence on the music of various types of ensembles. Carter’s diverse performances, which satisfy various musical demands in different contexts, provide a model of successful bass accompaniment concepts and techniques.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Newman, Timothy
Commitee: Demsey, David, Link, John
School: The William Paterson University of New Jersey
Department: Music
School Location: United States -- New Jersey
Source: MAI 82/1(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Music, Music theory
Keywords: Context, Improvised performance, Jazz bass, Carter, Ron
Publication Number: 28024121
ISBN: 9798662418905
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