Ron Carter ‎– Empire Jazz

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Tracklist

The Imperial March (Darth Vader's Theme) 8:33
The Asteroid Field 9:08
Han Solo And The Princess (Love Theme) 8:09
Lando's Palace 7:04
Yoda's Theme 5:25

Versions (10)

Cat# Artist Title (Format) Label Cat# Country Year
RS-1-3085 Ron Carter Empire Jazz(LP, Album) RSO RS-1-3085 US 1980 Sell This Version
CT-1-3085 Ron Carter Empire Jazz(Cass, Album) RSO CT-1-3085 US 1980 Sell This Version
2394 274 Ron Carter Empire Jazz(LP) RSO 2394 274 Australasia 1980 Sell This Version
2394 274 Ron Carter Empire Jazz(LP, Album) RSO 2394 274 Scandinavia 1980 Sell This Version
2394 274 Ron Carter Empire Jazz(LP, Album) RSO 2394 274 France 1980 Sell This Version
2394 274 Ron Carter Empire Jazz(LP, Album) RSO 2394 274 UK 1980 Sell This Version
MWF 1084 Ron Carter Empire Jazz(LP, Album) RSO MWF 1084 Japan 1980 Sell This Version
RS-1-3085 Ron Carter Empire Jazz(LP, Album, 26) RSO RS-1-3085 US 1980 Sell This Version
RS-1-3085 Ron Carter Empire Jazz(LP, Album, 72) RSO, Curtom RS-1-3085 US 1980 Sell This Version
RS-1-3085 Ron Carter Empire Jazz(LP, Album, Promo) RSO RS-1-3085 US 1980 Sell This Version

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nyuricon

nyuricon

May 7, 2021
referencing Empire Jazz, LP, Album, RS-1-3085

Generally most records that take a "Star Wars" theme fall into hokey cliché, novelty.

This is absolutely an exception, I recall years ago in the dollar bins catching this (I mistakenly entered a white label, only to have recently corrected that error), I figured with Ron Carter, Billy Cobham, Bob James, Hubert Laws, Ralph McDonald, and Jon Faddis among others, this would have to be decent.

In fact, it's amazing, one of those gems, they capture moods, and textures without being overshadowed by John Williams, instead as jazz in its long history is noted for, drawing on film scores, even turning many into standards, this LP just soars.

Even Darth Vader himself, cannot help but take a seat, and let it soak in, this music is that powerful!
scott_o_k

scott_o_k

September 8, 2020
referencing Empire Jazz, LP, Album, RS-1-3085
Just like its wonderful cover art, your first reaction to 'Empire Jazz' might be to laugh, but in no time this LP proves its genuine charms go far beyond mere kitsch or novelty. It turns out John Williams' timeless tunes and the talent of an all-star team of jazz talent (including Ron Carter, Bob James, Jon Faddis to name a few) are two tastes that go great together.

It really is a shame that 'Empire Jazz' has fallen into obscurity; sometimes it seems like the Star Wars franchise has kind of disowned all the great contemporary Star Wars music spinoffs like this one along with the Boris Midney and Meco albums. But in the meantime if you find a copy in good condition on the market be sure to snatch this up and prepare yourself for a chill time!
dylaf

dylaf

June 19, 2020
edited about 1 year ago
referencing Empire Jazz, LP, Album, RS-1-3085
Jazz covers lifted from the rebellion's darkest hour, the real original Star Wars nerd's favourite 'The Empire Strikes Back'?

While most Star Wars related audio releases (aside from the straight John Williams score) consist of novelty Moog/Synth/Disco/Library covers & tributes, there's a small few that really bring something truly creditable to the SW Universe. This being one of the strongest.

While keeping within the comfort zone of (generally) straight coffee table/elevator style Jazz, the musicianship behind these cover versions is of absolute pedigree standard. Just look at that line up! George Clinton (Parliament/Funkadelic) mentions in his memoirs about the impact Star Wars had on cinema audiences at the time; there was nothing like it before. So perhaps stands to reason that seasoned Jazz cats like Ron Carter, Bob James, Billy Cobham, Ralph McDonald, Hubert Laws, Jon Faddis, Joe Shepley, Frank Wess, Jay Berliner & Eddie Bert most likely were fully emersed in Star Wars personally, before scoring this suite. Sure sounds like it...

This is a real treat from start to finish; opening with a relaxed yet complex taster, the most evil of space themes, 'The Imperial March', surely the next best known section of music besides the main theme. 'The Asteroid Field' shifts into Latin territory, perhaps the least recallable audio section from the movie, & so perhaps a touch lost among what's on offer, but a solid take non the less.

Side B could just be the real gem for the Star Wars nut: 'Han Solo And The Princess', 'Lando's Palace' (wish they'd enlisted Billy Dee Williams to drop some smooth crooner chat on this one) & the tear jerking 'Yoda's Theme'. Ouch. As you never heard them before. Really very special, despite keeping a straight Trad- Jazz angle, these are beautifully faithful, complex & accomplished reworks & a real treasure from the era...

Lastly; the cover art, by (now) digital & airbrush graphic genius Jeff Wack. His work should look & feel familiar, having contributed visually to a large amount of Sci- Fi related media throughout the 70's, 80's to the present day (check the neon detail on Chewie's piano & floating seat). The image depicts Chewie on piano, C-3PO on bass, a stormtrooper on sax & R2 on, yep, drums... In the audience? The dark Lord Vader himself. Imagine the pressure. You'd be sweating like James Brown on Soul Train; in fact only second to having James Brown in the audience.

With a guest of honour like DV on the front row, the band's just gotta be tight.........

paulocal

paulocal

June 3, 2008
referencing Empire Jazz, LP, Album, Promo, RS-1-3085
The Old vintage VSOP off the rack

Ron Carter, Billy Cobham, Ralph McDonald, Huber Laws, Jon Faddis, Joe Shepley, Frank Wess, Jay Berliner and Eddie Bert

I picked up this album for $1.99 at the K-Mart about a decade ago, simply because I saw some of the names of the old VSOP group in the liner notes. I naturally thought this was going to be a “dog of an album,” under the rule: you get what you pay for.

But boy was I in for a surprised when the tightest Jazz group I have ever heard emerged playing sound track tunes from the movie “The Empire Strikes Back.” I was not particularly found of the movie or its music, but this album demonstrates that good musicians can make good music out of any vehicle.

And here is a new musical experience. Just the solos of Hubert Laws on Flute, is worth 100 times the price of the album.

What this album shows is that “tightness” is the sine qua non of any good music, but especially of Jazz. As I have done for myself, I challenge anyone to find a tighter more cohesive group than the group on this album. If this is what Ron Carter is known for in the Jazz world, then my hat is off to him. What a gem; what a treat.

Fifty stars