Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians
McClure, Ron, (Ronald Dix)
McClure, Ron, (Ronald Dix), bassist, composer; b. New Haven, CT, 22 November 1941. He was born to 43 year SNET Co. employee, Lawrence C. McClure (1901-1983) and Mildred L. McClure (1906-1994) (maiden name: Burnham) both from Wethersfield, Ct. Neither parents went past the 8th grade in school nor were musicians. He had two brothers: Lawrence C. McClure Jr. and Thomas A. McClure. Lawrence died in 1982 at the age of 62 and Thomas still lives in North Haven, Ct.
Ron grew up in North Haven, Ct. studied the accordion from age 5, attended North Haven High, was introduced to the string bass by Alex Winsco, band director, and was a Varsity baseball player. Played accordion with the "Cavaliers" and later joined the group called "The Kingsmen" composed of students at Yale University, RPI and The Hartt College of Music, where he later graduated from in 1963 with a Bachelor of Music. Studied bass with Joesph Iadone, Collegium Musicum/lute player, graduate of Yale, a protege' of Paul Hindemith, and contributed to the "Elementary Training for Musicians" text. At Hartt College, studied also with Bertrum Turetsky and David Walters. While in Hartford, Ct. (1960-63) played as house bassist at the Heublein Hotel with pianist, Merill Doucette and drummer, Joe "Skinny" Porcaro (L.A. Studio Musician and father of the late Jeff Porcaro of "Toto"). During that time, played with Randy Weston, Dave MacKay, Dick Johnson, Mike Mainieri and other musicians who served as mentors when he came to NYC in June of 1963. Met Bob Cranshaw in Hartford during that time who has been a friend and mentor, recommending musicians to use McClure over the years. In NY he was soon working with Buddy Rich (63-5), Herbie Mann (64), Maynard Ferguson (64-5), Marian McPartland (1965), Wes Montgomery with Wynton Kelly (1965-6), and others. Studied composition/arranging with Hall Overton 1968, arranging with Don Sebesky 1977 (30-week course) in NYC. At the end of the 60s and early 1970s, he joined and toured with the California based groups of Charles Lloyd (1966-9), the Fourth Way with violinist Michael White (1970-1), the Pointer Sisters, and others. He has been freelancing in NYC for many years, working withThelonious Monk (May 1972 at Village Vanguard; recording exists with superb work by McClure), Keith Jarrett (1973), Blod Sweat and Tears (1974-6), Jack DeJohnette (1976), and many others. He worked with Dave Liebman throughout the 1980s and was a member of the group Quest (Liebman, Richie Beirach, Billy Hart, McClure) from 1983-1991.
He's been an adjunct faculty as instructor of bass and ensembles at the following institutions: Columbia University 1996-1998, New York University (1989 - Present), Mannes College Of Music (1992-1993) and Long Island University (1983-1985). From 1971-1972, he taught full time at Berklee College Of Music. He has taught numerous master classes and lectures worldwide including, to name a few, Pop & Jazz Konservatorio, Helsinki , Finland 1992-1996; Sebelius Academy, Helsinki, Finland 1992-1997; Graz Hochschule, Graz, Austria 1989 -1997 (89-90 as part of the group Quest); Vermont Jazz Center Brattleboro, Vt. 1990-1997; 1977 -1979 - National Stage Band Summer Jazz Clinics, J. Abersold director; Advance Music Seminars, Rottenburg, Germany, 1980-81; and Taller de Musicos, Barcelona & Madrid, 1984-1986 (as part of the group Quest).
His daughter is Maya Sullivan, born July 30, 1970 in California where she attended Sonoma State University and is a research scientist with Dey Inc. Pharmaceutical Co., and in pursuit of becoming a full time Marine Biologist, completing her degree in that field in 1998.
Michel Petrucciani/Ron McClure: Cold Blues (1985); Yesterday's Tomorrow (1989); Descendants (1990); McJolt (1990); Inspiration (1991); Never Forget (1991); Tonite Only (1992); Sunburst (1993); Inner Account (1994); Never Always (1995); Concrete Canyon (1995); Closer to your tears (1996); Pink Cloud (1997); Dream Team (1998); Double Triangle (1999); Match Point (2002)
Maynard Ferguson: Dues (1964), 6 By 6 (1964); Charles Lloyd: Journey Within (1965), Love In (1966); Jerry Hahn: Arab-Be-In (1966); Charles Lloyd: Sound Track (1968), Live in Russia (1969); Wynton Kelly: Full View (1966), Live at the Left Bank Jazz Soc. (1968); Cal Tjader: Aqua Dolce (1969); The Fourth Way: Sun & Moon Have Come together (1969), The Fourth Way (1969), The Werewolf (1970); Joe Henderson & Woody Shaw: Jazz Patterns (1970); Joe Henderson: If you're not part of the solution , you're part of the problem (1970), I.P.O.B. reissued w/Tetragon, In Pursuit of Blackness (1970); Julian Priester: Love, Love (1970); Carla Bley: Escalator over the Hill (1970); The Pointer Sisters: The Pointer Sisters (1970); Thelonious Monk Quartet Live at the Village Vanguard (unissued; 1972); Mike Mantler: Silence (1973); The Pointer Sisters: That's A Plenty (1973), Retrospect (1973-75); John Clarke: Song of Light (1974); Blood, Sweat & Tears: M irror Image (1974), New City (1975), Live & Improvised (1976); Bob Mover: Bob Mover (1978); Peter J. Martin: The Anteater (1979); Dave Liebman: The Opal Heart (1979), Doin' It Again (1979), If They Only Knew (1980); Eero Koivistoinen: Picture in 3 colors (1984); George Russell: Live in an American Time Spiral (1984); George Robert: First Encounter (1987); Quest: Quest II (1987), Midpoint (1988); Rodger Fox Big Band: The New York Tapes (1988); John McNeil: Things We Did Last Summer (1984); Jim Pepper: West End Avenue (1988); Art Farmer & Slide Hampton: In Concert (1988); Quest: Natural Selection (1989), New York Nites (1989); Conrad Herwig: With Every Breath (1989), New York Hardball (1990); Klaus Ignatzek: Take It Easy (1990); Paul Bley: Indian Summer (1990), Rejoicing (1990), The Nearness Of You (1990); Quest: Of One Mind (1990); David Stryker: First Strike (1990), Strike Zone (1991); Tamami Koyake: Ask Me Now (1991); Lee Konitz: Zounds (1991); Philippe Kahn: Pacific High (1991); Jarmo Savolainen: First Sight (1991); Conrad Herwig: The Amulet (1991); Ben Besiakov: You Stepped Out Of A Dream (1991); Murray McNabb: Song for the Dream Weaver (1991); Karlheinz Miklin: Next Page (1991); Joe Locke: Present Tense (1991); Stanley Cowell: Sienna (1991); Eero Koivistoinen: Altered Things (1992); Carola Grey: Noisey Mama (1992); City West Quartet: New York Edition (1993); Jeff Silvertrust: Akanpesanranta (1993); Karlheinz Miklin: Decisions (1993); Joe Locke: Very Early (1994); Anders Bergcrantz: Live at Sweet Basil (1994); Anders Mogensen: Taking off (1995); Jarmo Savolainen: True Image (1995); John Tank: So In Love (1995); Jeff Silvertrust: Plasma Transfusion (1995); Don Friedman: Almost Everything (1995); George Cables: Quiet Fire (1995); Anders Bergcrantz: In This Together (1995); Gary Campbell: Thick & Thin (1996); Lee Konitz: It's You (1996); Misako Kano: Breakthrew (1996); Jed Levy: Sleight Of Hand (1996); Anders Bergcrantz: Quartet "C"(1996); James Spaulding: The smile of the snake (1996); Andrew Cheshire: This Is Me (1996); Junko Moriya: My Favorite Colors (1997); Karlheinz Miklin: Last Waltz (1997); Louise Gibbs: Invitation (1997); Michael Cochrane: Cutting Edge (1997); Ethel Ennis: If women ruled the World (1998); Andrew Cheshire: Another View (1998); David Hopkins: Clarinete Passions (1998); Fritz Pauer: New York Meeting (1998); Zone: First Definition (1999); Advance Music Jazz Workshop Series Play-a-longs: Quest/Standards, Modal Jazz, Blues, Classic Standards, Chick Corea Tunes (1989-1990)
Works by McClure:
Instrumentalist Magazine, " Amplifying the Acoustic Bass," February 1980
Second floor music: 100 original compositions & arrangements published
R.M., unpublished bass book
R.M., jazz harmony book (in progress)
Works about McClure:
Downbeat magazine, "Looking to the Future: 1966
All in Good Time, Oxford, 1987, by Marion McPartland (reprint of same article)
Keith Jarrett, by Ian Carr, Oxford, 1991 pp. 27- 38
Sassy, (Biography of Sarah Vaughan), by Leslie Gourse, Scribners, 1993, pp.143-145
Hi- Fi Vision Magazine (Switzerland), "Jazz Scene," April 1993. pp 24-26 Article, photo, discography
Straight No Chaser -the life and genius of Thelonious Monk by Leslie Gourse, Schirmer Books 1997 pp. 281-284
Grammy Award Nomination for: Best Instrumental Arrangement for: "No Show", (also composed by Ron McClure), recorded by Blood, Sweat & Tears, New City album, Columbia Records, 1975.
A.S.C.A.P. Jazz Composition Award, 1996
Creative Arts Public Service (C.A.P.S.) grant for Composition, 1981.
National Endowment of the Arts grant through Jazz Composers of America to compose and arrange Rumblings from Mars, performed at The Kitchen in New York City by the J.C.O.A., 1976.
Umo Jazz Orchestra Radio/ Concert Recording Ten Original compositions and arrangements for Big Band and Octet, performed 11/16/96, Finland.