Stardust is another satisfying record from Ron Carter, this one in part a tribute to the late Oscar Pettiford. Leading a quintet with Benny Golson on tenor, Joe Locke on vibes, Sir Roland Hanna on piano, and Lenny White on drums, Carter picks three choice tunes by Pettiford -- the swing-to-tango "Tamalpais," the minor-key bop classic "Bohemia After Dark," and the masterfully simple "Blues in the Closet." Carter's originals, also numbering three, include the slow 14-bar blues "Nearly," the mid-tempo swinger "Tail Feathers," and "That's Deep," which is Carter's answer to the question, "How Deep Is the Ocean?" Locke sits out on a fairly upbeat rendition of "The Man I Love"; Carter and Hanna close with a duet on "Stardust," with Carter taking the melody. Golson and Hanna are in particularly good form, their richly seasoned sounds meshing well with the élan of the younger Locke.
by David R. Adler