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Carl Filipiak and the Jimi Jazz Band

Carl Filipiak and the Jimi Jazz Band - I Got Your Mantra - 2007 - Art of Life

DON'T CALL Carl Filipiak a rocker who plays jazz. And don't call him a jazz musician who plays rock. "Really," he said, "I'd like to be known as a musician who plays guitar. I'm still trying to deal with naming this music. After a while, it gets down to, 'here it is, hope you like it. Call it what you want.' " He's a native of Baltimore, a musician who sports a rocker's hairdo and a diamond stud earring, an artist who makes fantastic sounds with his Ibanez guitar (which he endorses for the company). His music incorporates funk, fusion, jazz, blues and rock, a combination of alto sax, bass, guitar and drums. Filipiak will be performing at this weekend's Sunday in the Park Festival at Oregon Ridge Park with his band, which features Dave Fairall on sax, Jim Charlsen on bass and George Gray on drums. The festival includes entertainment on five stages, sky divers and a jousting tournament. Frequently described as a jazz fusion guitarist, Filipiak, 40, is no stranger to local music lovers. He's been voted "Best Guitar Player" in Baltimore magazine and has been a four-year winner in the same category at Maryland Musician magazine. "He's the finest guitarist to come out of this town," said Susie Mudd, publisher of Maryland Musician. "We've seen him grow from a baby jazz musician to a monster. Carl can go all the way if he finds the right people to back him."He's opened for national acts such as jazz trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, songstress Roberta Flack and rock guitarist Eric Johnson. "If you had told me I was going to be playing with some of these people, I wouldn't have believed it," he said. He's just released his second album, "Blue Entrance," which features Dennis Chambers, a Baltimore drummer who has played for jazz saxophonist David Sanborn and jazz guitarist John Scofield. Filipiak's album, distributed locally by his Geometric Records label, has to date sold 3,000 copies. The record includes a finger-tapping funk tune called "Fonk" as well as the slower-paced, bluesy "Say You Were." The "Blue Entrance" title is a clue to his musical direction, leaning toward more blues and jazz. But don't be fooled. There's still some rock in the roll, a remnant from his early career as a rock guitarist. At 14, influenced by the Beatles, Filipiak joined a local rock band, the Chaumonts, and played pop tunes. As much as he was performing rock music back then, he said, he was musically dead. His heart longed for jazz, an affinity he developed in his early years after studying with Walt Namuth, who played with drummer Buddy Rich and Larry Woolrich. And then there was guitarist George Benson. "His music floored me," Filipiak said. "I always knew in the back of my mind that I would be playing that music. That's how my love affair with jazz music began." In 1986, countless bands later, he quit the rock scene, blocked off some time in a recording studio and began to compose his own music. "What got me into music was seeing performers and what they did to people and what they did to me. I don't know how to describe the feeling. I cannot describe it to you how it feels. Music just makes me feel great. Good music inspires me." His first album, called "Electric Thoughts," contained seven scores of jazz, funk and rock. The record garnered praise from music writers at such trade publications as Guitar World, Maryland Musician and the Atlantic Music Journal. His first gig as a jazz fusion guitarist was at the 20 Grande club on Bowley's Lane, after the release of his record in 1988. Now he plays eight to 12 dates a month. Although he's wistful about the time he said he wasted playing rock 'n' roll music, he's happily looking to the future, one that involves another record release in the summer or fall of 1992. "I was very lucky not to get myself into the what-ifs of music -- what if I don't succeed? What if I can't get money? If you let these things get into you, it could stop you." The Carl Filipiak Group performs at 5 p.m. on the Main Stage at Sunday in the Park at Oregon Ridge, which runs from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Free shuttle to the park from Hunt Valley Mall runs regularly from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. Call (301) 887-2757. Free. – from “Baltimore guitarist makes natural progression from rock to jazz” By & © Lan Nguyen | Lan Nguyen,Evening Sun Staff September 19, 1991 © http://articles.baltimoresun.com/1991-09-19/features/1991262165_1_jazz-musician-filipiak-rock-guitarist

Carl Filipiak has earned critical acclaim as one of today’s most dynamic jazz guitarists. Jazziz Magazine has included him among a renowned list of guitar players in their nominations for “New Fusion Blood,” and JazzTimes calls him “a dazzlingly versatile guitarist.” Many of his recordings and performances have paired him with some of the industry’s finest musicians including Dennis Chambers, Victor Wooten, and Grammy nominee Bob Berg. His six independent recordings on Geometric Records have garnered him reviews in such prestigious publications as 20th Century Guitar, Billboard, Guitar Player, Guitar World, Jazziz and JazzTimes. Turner Broadcasting and NBC Sports have featured Carl’s music in several televised events including the Olympics. Carl performs at various festivals and venues along the east coast and has been honored regionally with several awards. He has received the esteemed WAMA award from the Washington Area Music Association for “Best Jazz Instrumentalist”, “Best Guitarist” from from Baltimore Magazine and “Best Jazz Musician” from The City Paper. Actively involved in music education, Carl is an endorser and clinician for Fender Guitars. He has released his own instructional guitar video “Use What You Got!” and is a contributing author and consultant for several music publishers. His recent works include an instructional book and companion CD for Mel Bay Publications and collaboration on a comprehensive book on guitar from Balafon Books in London. For over 25 years Carl has evolved musically—creating a unique style and sound influenced by his rock roots and passion for jazz. If you want great music follow him down the road that he’s staked out for himself and you’ll hear world-class writing, arranging and guitar playing. For anyone interested in Carl's career prior to 1987, check out Joe Vacarino’s newly self-published book, Baltimore Sounds: An Illustrated Encyclopedia of Baltimore-area Pop Musicians, Bands and Recordings 1950–1980. © 2008 Carl Filipiak © http://www.carlfilipiak.com

A versatile fusion guitarist who can also play fiery rock and straight-ahead jazz, Carl Filipiak dominates his CD I Got Your Mantra. Sometimes he plays with the power of an Al Di Meola or Buddy Guy, and at other times he sounds more lyrical. Most of I Got Your Mantra showcases Filipiak in a quartet with keyboardist Paul Soroka (who also has an excellent spot on tenor), electric bassist Steve Zerlin and either John Thomakos or Dennis Chambers on drums. Guest musicians are heard in spots and "Memphis Walk," which has a brief rap and three background vocalists, is a change of pace. But otherwise Filipiak stars throughout. While "A Day in the Life" is a sleepy opener, the music soon becomes intense with Filipiak seeming to create different tones on each selection. His explosive playing on the closing "Too Much TV" is humorous and throughout I Got Your Mantra, Filipiak shows that he is one of the leaders of 21st century fusion. © Scott Yanow © 2014 AllMusic, a division of All Media Network, LLC. | All Rights Reserved http://www.allmusic.com/album/i-got-your-mantra-mw0000487696

The great Maryland-based guitarist Carl Filipiak’s “I Got Your Mantra” features eight originals in the “spirit of the sixties” and includes covers of Jimi Hendrix’s “Bold As Love” and Lennon & McCartney’s “A Day in the Life”. Legendary drummer Dennis Chambers guests on four tracks. Carl has said that, "Really, I'd like to be known as a musician who plays guitar. I'm still trying to deal with naming this music. After a while, it gets down to, 'here it is, hope you like it. Call it what you want.' "His music incorporates funk, fusion, jazz, blues and rock. Check out Carl’s “Right On Time” on this blog, and buy Carl Filipiak and the Jimi Jazz Band’s “Live at the Cat's Eye” album [All tracks @ 320 Kbps: File size = 100 Mb]


1 A Day in the Life 5:22
2 Memphis Walk 4:18
3 Into the Sea 4:23
4 I Got Your Mantra 4:57
5 14-15-16 4:04
6 Bold as Love 4:43
7 Francesca 1:55
8 Wakan Tanka 4:07
9 Hey Jimi (Slight Return) 4:48
10 Too Much TV 3:25

All tracks composed by Carl Filipiak except Track 1 by Lennon & McCartney, and Track 6 by Jimi Hendrix


Carl Filipiak - Acoustic & Electric Guitars
John Grant - Acoustic Guitar on Track 8: Organ on Track 6
Steve Zerlin - Electric Bass, Vocals on Track 6
Gary Grainger - Electric Bass on Track 9
Paul Soroka - Keyboards, Lyricon, Tenor Saxophone
John Thomakos - Drums on Tracks 1,3,4,5,8
Dennis Chambers - Drums on Tracks 2,3,6,10
Will Calhoun - Drums on Track 9
Greg Hatza - Tabla on Track 4
Larry Goodwin, Tracey Tieman, William Lynch - Backing Vocals on Track 2
Master De Re D.Rumm - Rap on Track 2


Art of Life Records is proud to present Maryland based guitarist Carl Filipiak's seventh studio recording as a leader and his first release as a leader for Art of Life. Joining Carl on "I Got Your Mantra" are drummer Dennis Chambers, keyboardist/saxophonist Paul Soroka, drummer John Thomakos and bassist Steve Zerlin. Inspired by the spirit of Jimi Hendrix, the Beatles and the ’60’s, "I Got Your Mantra" features eight new originals written by Carl Filipiak in addition to a version of “A Day in the Life” by the Beatles and “Bold as Love” by Jimi Hendrix. "I Got Your Mantra" was digitally recorded and mixed at 24-bit by John Grant at Secret Sound Studio in Maryland from November 2006 to August 2007. All tracks have been digitally mastered using 24-bit digital technology. I'd like to say hello to everyone and thanks for your interest in my music. Over the years I've been hearing friends and fans tell me to record a CD of Hendrix inspired songs. As a result of adding a few more Hendrix tunes to our set list and writing material with that spirit in mind we've come up with a brand new CD and sound. One way I can describe it would be to imagine bringing a 60's vibe into the 21st century. I'll give you a description of each song and what went into recording them. "A Day in the Life" — One of the best Lennon-McCartney songs ever and hard to believe it's been 40 years since Sgt. Pepper's was released. We worked hard to make this this one fly since the original uses a full orchestra for the middle section. I think you'll like what we did with it and we're obviously using lots of slide guitars to get a similar effect. The melody was double tracked and played on slide guitar and has a Jeff Beck/George Harrison vibe to it. We stayed true to the alarm clock and other effects as well. Instead of trying to make the last chord ring out forever, we waited just until it died out and reversed everything. We took a few liberties to make this our own with the realization that we're never going to top the Beatles! Not our intention anyway, but the bar line was set way high on this one. I basically just love the song and hope you like our version of it. That's John Thomakos on drums at the end and his flanged solo on the way out is killing. "Memphis Walk" — A song I wrote as a teenager in an extremely popular and unknown group called the Deluxe Martini Band. It's about a dream I had of walking down a street in Memphis and dancing, which is something that's way out of character for me! In the dream someone asks me what the dance is called and I tell them it's called the Memphis Walk. Why can't I dream up songs like "Yesterday"? Features rapper Master Re Re d Rumm and the Jimi Jazz Gospel Choir. And I'm not kidding. "Into the Sea" — Inspired by two Hendrix tunes. One is more obvious than the other and I think I'll keep this one to myself for a while. If you figure it out let me know. Features the drum tag team of Thomakos and Chambers on one song. "I Got Your Mantra" — The title track. Got this by playing with members of Facing East, one of my favorite groups. It's time signature is in 8 and a half. I really don't do it in a traditional way and it actually sounds like a funk tune at first until you try to dance to it! Features tablas by Greg Hatza who also happens to be one of the baddest B3 players in Baltimore. The title was inspired by an episode of Larry David's show, Curb Your Enthusiasm. The main character gives his mantra away to a friend and then later on, wants it back. And yes, the show is funny and the title fits the vibe of the song. I love Indian music and you'll notice that I'm using some scales that I play in a way that were influenced by Eric Johnson. I've opened for Eric years ago and even called his management a while back to have him play on this record. Since it didn't work out, I played some "koto" parts that will sound very much like him. While I do it in a different way the effect is the same and I'd like to give credit where credit is due. There are some cool E-Bow parts and reverse slide guitar parts in this one as well. "14-15-16" — Loosely based on "Norwegian Wood" but sounds nothing like it. I like that process of writing a lot when it works out well. Trippy backwards guitar on this one and an overall Middle Eastern vibe throughout. I've been eating to much Persian food! The title is musical shorthand for the one chord, four chord and so on. Now you know. "Bold As Love" — This one speaks for itself. We're not trying to make this one our own because you probably can't! This reflects the sound of the band when we go out and play Hendrix tributes. As close as we can get and as true to the vibe of the original as possible. I think Steve sounds great on vocals and he was literally thrown into doing it! Dennis Chambers on drums sounds Hendrix approved and I dug out the Marshalls for this one. Just ask the Axis. "Francesca" — An acoustic piece that I put on tape at the end of the sessions. I don't think of myself as an acoustic player but John Grant made me sound good on this one. A Taylor tuned down a whole step. Goes out to Rikki Harris. My aunt that bought my first amp and got my band our first gig. Some things you never forget. "Wakan Tanka" — Dedicated to and inspired by my native American friend, James Branham Runs with Wolf. The title means the Great Mystery and I'm honored to use it for one of my songs. This one has an obvious Hendrix, Stevie Ray vibe to it. Until the left turn at the end and we get to hear Paul do his thing on lyricon. Features John Grant on acoustic guitar. "Hey Jimi (Slight Return)" — Hard to believe I recorded this eleven years ago! Features Will Calhoun on drums and Gary Grainger on bass. Based off the chord changes to "Hey Joe", this one was remixed to sound like it was done this year. Hope you like it. "Too Much TV" — Based on the chord changes to Gershwin's composition "I Got Rhythm". A form called "rhythm changes" used in countless Jazz tunes and television theme songs. The Flintstones and Leave it to Beaver borrowed from these popular changes. That's where the similarity ends. Don't think you'll be hearing this on any family TV show real soon. My version sounds more like a freak out song. Ornette meets Jimi. Not meant for American Idol. Squeal like a pig. I never want to hear smooth Jazz again! This song should have a parental advisory on it. We are emitting sounds that you may not want to hear twice in your life. I like it. Dedicated to Jimi Hendrix, the Beatles and the spirit of the 60's. © Carl Filipiak © © 2013 Art of Life Records, LLC http://www.artofliferecords.com/igotyourmantra.html#notes


Carl Filipiak is an American jazz-rock guitarist and recording artist for Art of Life Records. USA. Best known for his jazz-fusion CD's and partnership with world renowned drummer, Dennis Chambers. His critically acclaimed CD's feature Miles Davis' alumni Bob Berg and Gary Thomas on sax, Will Calhoun on drums (Living Color), Gary Grainger on bass (John Scofield) and many others. (See http://www.carlfilipiak.com/biography.html) He was included among a list of renowned guitar players and nominated for "New Fusion Blood" in Jazziz Magazine. He is an author of instructional books for Mel Bay Publications and Balafon Books. His 2013 release "Live at the Cat's Eye" has reached #1 on both jazz fusion and bebop jazz categories on Amazon MP3 album downloads. In 1987 Carl Filipiak recorded his first album, "Electric Thoughts" on his own Geometric Records. Soon afterwards, he started recording and playing with Dennis Chambers, Greg Grainger and Gary Grainger. In 1990 "Blue Entrance" was released with national and international distribution, and he met Bob Berg (Miles Davis, Mike Stern). Bob Berg played on "Right On Time" (1993), "Hotel Real" (1997) and "Peripheral Vision" (2000). In the late 90's he did some touring with Victor Wooten and Will Calhoun. His recordings have garnered him reviews in publications such as 20th Century Guitar, Billboard, Guitar Player, Guitar World and Jazz Times. His music has been featured in the Olympics and on televised events for NBC Sports and Turner Broadcasting. He also produced and wrote the songs for Dennis Chambers CD, "Big City." Filipiak currently plays on the East Coast at various clubs and festivals including Blues Alley in Washington DC, The RamsHead in Annapolis, and the Berks Jazz Festival in PA. He performs once a month in Fell's Point at the Cat's Eye, well known to blues and jazz fans, in his hometown of Baltimore, MD. His 2007 release, I Got Your Mantra, marked a departure from his longtime label Geometric Records to Art of Life Records, and the introduction of the Jimi Jazz Band. His latest release (2013) "Live at the Cat's Eye" features the Jimi Jazz Band and has reached the top of mp3 album downloads on Amazon in two jazz categories. He is also currently a member of Lafayette Gilchrist and the New Volcanoes, and can be heard on their latest release, "It Came From Baltimore." Lafayette's music can be heard on the HBO series, "The Wire" and "Treme." In addition to recording and performing, Carl is actively involved in music education. He is the author of "Rock-Fusion Improvising," an instructional book and companion CD from Mel Bay Publications and a contributing author on jazz guitar for several publishers. "Rock-Fusion Improvising" is listed in Guitar World Magazine as one of the top 25 books & instructional videos you must have. He has opened for national acts such as jazz trumpeter Wynton Marsalis, songstress Roberta Flack and rock guitarist Eric Johnson. His albums, Looking Forward Looking Back and Peripheral Vision, have been reviewed on the All About Jazz website and Guitar Nine. Filipiak's current band features Frank Young on drums, Paul Hannah on sax, and Matt Everhart on bass.

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