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Paul Carr

Known for his hard-charging and soulful post-bop style, saxophonist Paul Carr upholds the important tradition of the Texas tenor. Growing up, he studied and played with local heroes including saxophonist Don Wilkerson, the fabled educator Conrad Johnson, and the legendary Arnett Cobb. He studied two years on a full scholarship at Texas Southern University and completed his degree in music performance at Howard University in Washington, DC.

Since then, Carr has been based in the DC area performing on the local scene at venues including Blues Alley, Twins Jazz, Takoma Station, and the now-defunct (but once vibrant) One Step Down. Carr has been a repeat performer at The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Smithsonian Jazz Café, and the Corcoran Gallery of Art’s jazz series.

Carr’s 1993 recorded debut as a leader, “PC10” was received with critical praise from the Washington Post, Houston Post, and USA Today, as well as magazines including including DownBeat, Cadence, and JazzTimes. Since “PC10,” Carr has recorded on over 25 other recordings as a sideman.

Carr’s strong commitment to jazz is most evident in his role as an educator. After over twenty years of teaching privately, Carr launched the Jazz Academy of Music, Inc., (www.jazzacademy.org) a 501c-3 non-profit corporation dedicated to “advancing and preserving jazz through jazz education” via year-round workshops and a summer camp where Carr and a staff of local musicians teach high school students the principles of improvisation, through small group and big band playing. His students have been selected for local, state, and national jazz groups; including the Maryland All-State Jazz Ensemble, the IAJE Clifford Brown Fellows, and Grammy National High School Honors Jazz Ensemble. Three of Carr’s students have been accepted to the prestigious Julliard jazz program in that program’s short history and several others have been admitted to The New England Conservatory, the Eastman School of Music, the Manhattan School of Music, and the New School.

Carr has performed numerous times at the White House, for Presidents Clinton, and Bush as well as the late King Hussein of Jordan. He has toured South America, Central America, Europe, and the Middle East. In addition, as a performer Carr has shared the stage with artists such as flautist Kent Jordan, saxophonists Branford Marsalis, Kirk Whalum, and Steve Wilson, and trumpeters Terrell Stafford, and Wynton Marsalis.

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In Pictures

Scenes from the 2024 Mid-Atlantic Jazz Festival

Read "Scenes from the 2024 Mid-Atlantic Jazz Festival" reviewed by Matt Hooke


The greatest gift any music festival can give a listener is the chance to think about a genre differently and the Mid-Atlantic Jazz Festival did just that between February 16 and February 18. Most concert goers attend a show to hear a specific artist they are already familiar with, but the beauty of a festival is that it can expose you to many different styles in the span of a weekend. Across several stages at the Hilton Hotel ...

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Album Review

Paul Carr: Straight Ahead Soul

Read "Straight Ahead Soul" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey


If saxophonist Paul Carr could be described in a single word, it would be durable. Carr's two previous recordings--Just Noodlin' (PCJE, 2008) and Musically Yours (PCJE, 2006)--displayed a dependable adherence to the Ray Charles' principles of rhythm and blues. His tone and attack are made of the same precious metal as that of Hank Crawford and David “Fathead" Newman. On Straight Ahead Soul, Carr does his part to move adult contemporary jazz toward respectability with the fussy and hard-to-please traditionalist. ...

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Album Review

Paul Carr: Musically Yours

Read "Musically Yours" reviewed by Michael P. Gladstone


Houston's tenor saxophonist Paul Carr has provided, within a short recording career span, a number of intriguing and solid appearances. On his debut, Just Noodlin' (Jazz Karma, 2006), Carr provides a soulful and robust tenor sax in the style of Hank Mobley without seeking any deliberate comparisons. In addition, with his appearance on Eric Byrd's Brother Ray (Self Published, 2008), Carr is one of the four-man sax section which pays homage to the Ray Charles Atlantic Records period. Carr is ...

260
Album Review

Paul Carr: Musically Yours: Remembering Joe Henderson

Read "Musically Yours: Remembering Joe Henderson" reviewed by C. Michael Bailey


Listening to the music of tenor saxophonist Paul Carr, one recognizes that he has completely imbued the music of the late Joe Henderson, to whom he pays tribute on Musically Yours: Remembering Joe Henderson. Growing up in Texas under the spell of such “Texas Tenors" as Don Wilkerson and Arnett Cobb, Carr developed a big blusey tone.

Carr uses this to great effect as he draws the funk and blues out of the Henderson's compositions--performing them quite differently from how ...

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Album Review

Paul Carr: Musically Yours

Read "Musically Yours" reviewed by Edward Blanco


Remembering one of the great tenor masters of jazz, saxophonist and educator Paul Carr pays homage to the late Joe Henderson by offering an artful session of hard-driving bop with his third album as a leader on Musically Yours. He borrows the title from Henderson, who once autographed an album that Carr brought with him to a gig at the now closed Washington, DC jazz club, The One Step Down, where the saxophonist signed “To Paul, Musically Yours, Joe."

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Album Review

Paul Carr: Just Noodlin'

Read "Just Noodlin'" reviewed by Michael P. Gladstone


Growing up in Houston, saxophonist Paul Carr was rasised in the tradition of the Texas Tenors. His local heroes included Don Wilkerson and Arnett Cobb. Carr started his musical education at Texas Southern University and completed it at Howard University in Washington, DC. He has since spent more than twenty years as a dynamic part of the DC jazz scene.

Since Carr's debut album came out in 1993, he he has participated on over 25 other recordings. As ...

165
Album Review

Paul Carr: Just Noodlin'

Read "Just Noodlin'" reviewed by Jack Bowers


Saxophonist Paul Carr is far too modest. If he's Just Noodlin', I'd love to hear what he could do if he ever buckled down and started playing in earnest. Carr and his front-liner partner, trumpeter Terell Stafford, remind me of the Brecker brothers, saxophonist Michael and trumpeter Randy--purposeful post-boppers with tons of technique and plenty of interesting things to say.

This is only the second album as leader for Carr, who has been gigging around the Washington, DC area since ...

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Primary Instrument

Saxophone

Credentials/Background

Carr’s strong commitment to jazz is most evident in his role as an educator. After over twenty years of teaching privately, Carr launched the Jazz Academy of Music, Inc., a 501 C-3 non-profit corporation dedicated to “advancing and preserving jazz through jazz education” via year-round workshops and a summer camp where Carr and a staff of local musicians teach high school students the principles of improvisation, through small group and big band playing. His students have been selected for local, state, and national jazz groups; including the Maryland All-State Jazz Ensemble, the IAJE Clifford Brown Fellows, and Grammy National High School Honors Jazz Ensemble

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Photos

Music

Dorothy

From: Paul Carr B3 Sessions (DC-NY
By Paul Carr

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