【Joe Carter - Both Sides of the Equator】(2006) ★★★★

(English follows Japanese)

Joe CarterはConnecticut出身のGuitarist。10歳でギターを始め、Jim Hall, Bill Evans, Paul Desmond, Ed Bickertに感銘する。New York UniversityでSal Salvador, John Scofield, Allan Hanlon, Lee Konitz、Don FriedmanからJazzを学ぶ。

その後、Art Farmer, Lee Konitz, Cecil Payne, Rufus Reid, Harvie Swartz. Akira Tana, Stafford James, Richard Wyands, Don Friedman, Hendrik Meurkens, Steve Kuhn, Eddie Bert, Mike Long...o, Nabil Totah, Ray Mosca, David Finck, Bill Hardman, Junior Cook, Jamil Nasser、Al Harewoodらと共演。一方何度もBrazilに旅をしてBrazilian Musciaに傾倒。Mauricio Einhom, Robertinho Silva, Luis Eca, Luis Alves, Paulo Russo, Joao Cortez, Claudio Caribe, Alosio Aguiar, Nilson Matta, Portinho, Jehovah de Gaita等のBrazilian Jazz Musicanと共演する。 

現在はConnecticutのSacred Heart UniversityとHartford Conservatoryで教鞭を執っている。

さて、本作品ではDavid Finck(acoustic bass)とZeMauricio(percussion)のトリオというシンプルな編成で、実に上質なBrazilian Jazzが聴けます。JoeはBrazilian Jazzをもう何十年も追求しているので、そこらの退屈なBrazilian JazzとはQualityが全然違います。選曲がこれまた最高です。Antonio Carlos Jobim、Mílton Nascimento、Roberto MenescalといったBrazilian Songsに加えて、Jazz Standerdの"Blame it on My Youth"、"Young and Foolish"、特に"Waltz for Debby"は「銘演」「必聴」と言えるでしょう。

Joe, Many thanks for the wonderful BD gift! I'll treasure this album. You are too kind!

Joe Carter - acoustic nylon string guitar
David Finck – acoustic bass
Ze Mauricio – percussion

1. Nós e o Mar (Roberto Menescal - Ronaldo Bôscoli)
2. I've Never Been in Love Before (Frank Loesser)
3. Mojave (Antonio Carlos Jobim)
4. Viktor with a K (Joe Carter)
5. Blame it on My Youth (Oscar Levant)
6. Ponta de Areia (Mílton Nascimento)
7. Valsa de Eurídice (Vinícius de Moraes)
8. Batida Diferente (Mauricio Einhorn - Durval Ferreira)
9. Young and Foolish ( Albert Hague - Arnold Horwitt)
10. Tema do Boneco de Palha (Vera Brasil - Sivan Castelo Neto)
11. Waltz for Debby (Bill Evans)
12. Nada Como Ter Amor (Carlos Lyra - Vinícius de Moraes)
13. Variations on a Theme by Bill Evans (Joe Carter)

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Both Sides of the Equator is not Joe Carter's first incursion into Brazilian music. Joe fell in love with Brazilian music after performing in Brazil several times as well as teaching there. His subtle, warm and stylish guitar playing is very well suited for a variety of Brazilian genres he performs, including Samba, Bossa Nova and even Baião. A graduate of New York University, Joe also studied with guitarists Sal Salvador, John Scofield and Allan Hanlon as well as saxophonist Lee Konitz and pianist Don Friedman. This well-rounded musical education formed the basis of his tailor-made style in Brazilian music. Joe is well respected as a Brazilian performer on both sides of the Equator. He has recorded with harmonica player Mauricio Einhorn, bassist Nilson Matta (of Trio da Paz and Brazilian Trio), saxophonist Lee Konitz, flugelhornist Art Farmer and dozen of other jazz musicians. As with his three previous Brazilian albums -- Um Abraço no Rio (1996), The Samba Rio Trio (1997) and Two for Two (2001), all on Empathy Records -- Joe never overdoes his performances and arrangements. He prefers the effective intimacy of duo, trio and quartet formations for Brazilian music. Here in Both Sides of the Equator Joe is joined by bassist David Finck and percussionist Zé Maurício in a balanced collection of music by Brazilian and North American composers. He also adds to this fine mixture two of his own compositions. Several things in Both Sides of the Equator make the album thoroughly enjoyable. With Joe's masterful approach to these melodies, the album flows smoothly from track to track and maintains the listener absorbed in this fine material. One remarkable characteristic of a good musician who knows well the music being performed is the ability to transcend geographical borders seamlessly. Joe accomplishes that very well when he goes from Menescal to Loesser in the first two tracks of the album as well as in the rest of the album. His lyrical arrangement for Jobim's "Mojave" is one of the first surprises in the album. Normally performed in an uptempo style, here Joe takes this Jobim classic a couple of notches down in its tempo and gives us a beautiful and unforgettable ballad. Picture a soft and breezy afternoon on a white sandy beach with nothing but the sound of the ocean and vast skies above you. "Mojave" is the soundtrack for this paradisiacal landscape. Another surprising arrangement Joe reserved for us comes in Milton Nascimento's well known "Ponta de Areia." Unlike any other arrangement I've ever heard for this song, here Joe creates a whole new setting for this song with a soft baião flavor. It is different and works quite well. Guitar lovers and listeners looking for innovative approaches to Brazilian and North American classics should find plenty of material to enjoy in Both Sides of the Equator. Joe Carter's expert hands and cool guitar solos can be sublime as in "Valsa de Eurídice" and impetuous as in "Tema do Boneco de Palha." Joe does cover well the music from both sides of the Equator with one great sound. You can read more about the artist and album in his website.

Joe Carter, a versatile jazz guitarist, is so fluent and eloquently inventive in the musical language of the samba that you might well think that he was born and bred in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, rather than in Bridgeport, Conn. About 20 years ago, Carter's international tours as a jazz guitarist took him to Rio where in the exciting, samba-rocking local club scene were sounds that were light years removed from the dilutedbland blend that he was more accustomed to hearing back in the States. Since then the longtime Trumbull resident and highly skilled modern jazz guitarist, has immersed himself in the art of the samba, both as an instrumentalist and a composer. As a celebration of his dual citizenship as both a jazz and samba artist, Carter has just released a new album, the aptly titled, "Both Sides of the Equator" (Empathy Records). It's a musically bilingual celebration of material from the North American songbook, standards from Brazilian music and a few originals thrown into the tasteful, cultural melting pot. A guitarist whose playing is graced with clarity and speech-like lines in his phrasing, Carter has chosen to express his embrace of both North and South America in an intimate trio setting. This chamber music format is ideal for Carter's conversational, story-telling mode of playing. His artistic voice especially flourishes in the challenge of dialogue. Mutual exchanges act as a catalyst for his fresh ideas that unfold in clean, crisp, lyrical lines. Carter's collaborators are the deft, big-toned bassist David Finck and the noted Brazilian percussionist Ze Mauricio. One of Manhattan's most sought-after session players, Finck covers a broad spectrum of styles including jazz, popular, Brazilian and classical music. His has played with Dizzy Gillespie, Aretha Franklin, Sinead O'Connor and Tony Bennett. Mauricio, who grew up in Rio, has been the percussionist of choice for Paquito D'Rivera, Helio Alves, Dionne Warwick and Harry Belafonte. Carter and Finck are compatible players. Both instrumentalists seem to hear music as good, brisk, witty conversation. Their articulate dialogue is interactive, interesting, varied and always directly to the point. Notes are not wasted. Bombast is verboten. Right from the first of the CD's 13 selections, "Nos E O Mar," the mood is relaxed and cool, while simultaneously alive with rhythmic and melodic energies. On Frank Loesser's "I've Never Been in Love Before," Finck lays down a rock solid foundation for the triointerweaving strong, flowing accompanying lines and gets to solo as well. Carter's warm, cleanly articulated playing often exudes a sense of classicism, as on Antonio Carlos Jobim's "Mojave," accenting the album's chamber music feel. As a composer, Carter contributes two originals, including "Viktor," a samba dedicated to the oldest of his three sons, and "Variations on a Theme by Bill Evans," his homage to Evans whose inventiveness and lyricism are indelible inspirations for the guitarist's own reflective style. Carter's interpretations of the ballad "Young and Foolish" and Evans' famous "Waltz for Debby" resonate with lyrical expression, artful blends of sincerity of artistic intent and serenity of spirit. You hear these qualities throughout the session, exemplified, for example, on Carter's slow, beautiful rendition of Oscar Levant's "Blame It on My Youth" and his poetic take on Milton Nascimento's moving "Ponta De Areia." The samba numbers vary from lovely and sensuous to lithe and lively, always simmering with rhythmic and melodic nuance. All the pieces are performed on Carter's acoustic nylon string guitar and Finck's double bass, powered by Mauricio's tasty, never bland, spontaneous seasoning on percussion. With Carter's fingers playing directly on nylon strings, the trio's instrumentation gives the CD's sound a warm, human touch highlighting the hand-crafted quality of the artworks on display. Carter will tap into selections from "Both Sides of the Equator" Sunday, July 22, from 6 to 8 p.m. at Pizzeria Laurentano, 291 Greenwood Ave., Bethel. He leads a trio featuring his longtime friend and collaborator, bassist Jeff Fuller, a noted interpreter of Latin and Brazilian music, and percussionist Nanny Assis. Music charge: ¥805.84; cover, ¥805.84 minimum. Information and reservations: 203-792-1500. Carter's new recording is available through iTunes, Amazon, CDbaby and http://www.joecartermusic.com/. It can be purchased for ¥1,208.75 check or money order, made out to Empathy Records. Address: Empathy Records, PO Box 163, Trumbull, CT., 06611. An indie label, Empathy has since 1980 specialized in jazz and Brazilian music, and released recordings featuring Carter, its founder; Art Farmer, Lee Konitz, Cecil Payne, Don Friedman, Harvie Swartz, Nilson Matta, Mauricio Einhorn, Porthinho, Akira Tana and others.
- By OWEN McNALLY, Monday Night Jazz

Joe Carter started guitar studies at an early age, eventually focusing on Jazz. While earning B.A. and M.A. degrees in Jazz Performance and starting his Jazz Ph.D. studies at New York University he studied privately with guitarists Sal Salvador, John Scofield, Allan Hanlon, saxophonist Lee Konitz and pianist Don Friedman. After several performance and teaching trips to Brazil his current specialty is Brazilian Jazz, combining Straightahead and Bebop styles of Jazz with Samba, Bossa Nova and Northeast styles of Brazilian music. His latest two CDs showcase his familiarity with Brazilian music; UM ABRACO NO RIO (An Embrace Of Rio) was recorded in Rio de Janeiro with Brazilian musicians. World reknown harmonica virtuoso Mauricio Einhom, bassist Luis Alves and drummer Joao Cortez have previously performed with Joe Carter in different group settings on Joe's various performance trips to Brazil. THE SAMBA RIO TRIO CD is Joe Carter's U.S. version of his group utilizing the talents of two of the better known Brazilian artists residing in New York: bassist Nilson Matta and legendary drummer Portinho. Two recordings that illustrate Joe Carter's staightahead Jazz playing are DUETS which features Carter in a guitar/bass duo setting with Rufus Reid and Harvie Swartz and ART FARMER & LEE KONITZ WITH THE JOE CARTER TRIO & QUARTET which pairs Carter with Art Farmer and Lee Konitz along with Harvie Swartz and Akira Tana. During the course of his career Joe Carter has recorded and/or performed with Jazz artists such as Art Farmer, Lee Konitz, Cecil Payne, Rufus Reid, Harvie Swartz. Akira Tana, Stafford James, Richard Wyands, Don Friedman, Hendrik Meurkens, Steve Kuhn, Eddie Bert, Mike Longo, Nabil Totah, Ray Mosca, David Finck, Bill Hardman, Junior Cook, Jamil Nasser and Al Harewood among others; and with Brazilian Jazz artists such as Mauricio Einhom, Robertinho Silva, Luis Eca, Luis Alves, Paulo Russo, Joao Cortez, Claudio Caribe, Alosio Aguiar, Nilson Matta, Portinho, Jehovah de Gaita and others. Some of Joe Carter's International performances as a leader have included the following:

People Jazz Bar, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Rio Jazz Club, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Ritmo Nightclub, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Gula Gula Bar, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Horse's Head Saloon, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
MafUa Do Malungo, Recife, Brazil
Jazz Yatra International Jazz Festival, Bombay, Goa and Bangalore, India
Le Village Nightclub, Paris, France
International World Music Festival, Trossingen, Germany
JAZZTIMES Convention, New York City

New York Guitar Show
Joe Carter has been featured in two books Jazz Guitar on Record by Richard Hetrick and Adrian Ingram's The Gibson ES-175, Its History & Players. He also is mentioned in The Brazilian Sound by McGowan and Pessanha. Joe Carter is currently an instructor at Sacred Heart University and Hartford Conservatory, both in Connecticut, where he specializes in Guitar, World Music and Jazz courses. Some of his courses include Guitar Instruction, Guitar Ensemble, Rhythm Section Ensemble, Music Of The Americas Ensemble, Jazz History, The Music Of Latin America & The Caribbean, Music In America and Music Theory. In addition to this, and also teaching privately in New York City, Joe Carter has taught clinic/ workshops in Europe, South America and the United States. He is also the author of four textbooks for guitar. 

"His show is a gift to those who, tired of noise, want to listen to music played in a sensitive and intelligent way." - Chico Nelson, Jornal Do Brasil, Brazil 

"Subtle, elegant, dynamic, lyrical, WONDERFUL!" - The Afternoon Despatch & Courier, India 

"His style is a model of good taste, sobriety, elegance and melodic beauty." - Jose Domingos Raffaelli, 0 Globo, Brazil 

"He never plays an unnecessary note. His improvisations are beautifully shaped, while his comping is the epitome of taste." - Adrian Ingram, Just Jazz Guitar 

"Carter moves with certainty and his solos are all intense and melodic." - Guiseppe Ballaris, Guitar Club Magazine, Italy 

"Modem guitar repertoire displaying remarkable technique and imagination with a highly personal manner of swinging." - Louis Victor Mialy, Jazz Hot Magazine, France 

"A sensitive Bebop player with a lyrical turn of phrase not unlike a slightly more modal version of Jim Hall." - Chris Burden, String Jazz Magazine, England 

"Carter is a perfectionist to whom music is a supreme art form, an essentially lyrical guitarist who brings out the melodic essence of each song." - Musicnet Magazine