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Carson Smith!

Discussion in 'Bassists [DB]' started by Steve Boisen, Dec 16, 2004.

  1. Steve Boisen

    Steve Boisen Supporting Member

    Dec 3, 2003
    Tampa Bay, FL
    The recent thread on Putter Smith made me think about his late brother Carson Smith whose playing I really enjoy. His name doesn't come up very much, but he was a superb player. My all-time favorite bass feature is a tune he wrote and performed with the Chico Hamilton Quintet called "Mr. Smith Goes To Town". Anyone here ever heard it? It's a catchy minor-key melody that bears a strong resemblance to the Isreali national anthem (really). It features a fugue/counterpoint section with clarinet, guitar and cello and Carson plays some tasty solos throughout the track. I have it on vinyl but I can't find it on CD other than a prohibitively expensive multi-disc set.

    - Steve

  2. Steve, as I have mentioned before, I spent several long concerts and jazz parties here in Denver with Carson. They were promoted and put on by a kind of famous jazz entrepreneur named Dick Gibson. They were pretty big deals in that Gibson would hire about 5 or 6 guys per instrument. The bass player were like: Ray Brown, Milt Hinton, John Clayton, Major Holley, you know, people of that kind of fame (with the exception of me) This would happen once a year for the big party over the Labor day week-end, then there would be separate concerts over the year too.
    Carson ended up living in Las Vegas which is not exactly JAZZ City.
    I loved the Chico Hamilton band, that also included Jim Hall.
    I can only say that i'm sorry that Carson never got his due in the jazz world. He was a great player and good guy!!