Paul Carr, a Houston native and Howard University graduate, has dedicated his professional career to mastering the saxophone and the art of Jazz. He carries on the Texas tenor tradition espoused by great heroes such as the late Houstonians Arnett Cobb and Don Wilkerson who served as his early idols and mentors.
Carr has recorded five CD’s, which have been well received by critics and jazz fans alike. His CD “DC-NYC Organ Sessions” was released in September, 2014. Carr has toured Russia, Europe, the Middle East, the Caribbean, and Central and South America and has shared the stage with many of the greatest names in jazz. He was also a favorite of President Clinton during his term in office and performed at many of Clinton’s private events.
Passionately committed to the education of children, particularly as it relates to the preservation of jazz, in 2002, he founded the Jazz Academy of Music, which hosts summer camps and jazz ensembles for kids throughout the year. Carr’s students have been admitted to prestigious programs; many of his former students are touring and performing all over the world. Most recently in March 2014, Carr received the prestigious, Howard University, “Benny Golson Jazz Master Award”, for his outstanding work as a performer, presenter, and educator. He served as a panelist at the 2014 Congressional Black Caucus where he spoke on the importance of jazz education and advocated for federal support toward the advancement and preservation of traditional jazz.
Finally, in 2010, Carr re-established the East Coast Jazz Festival as the Mid-Atlantic Jazz Festival, and serves as its Executive and Artistic Director. The festival enjoys over 2,000 attendees that travel from states across the U.S. and beyond. Held every President’s Day weekend in Rockville, MD, the festival incorporates a strong educational component, with a high school band competition and free master classes for students, as well as an entertainment component with performances by NEA Jazz Masters, such as Benny Golson, Jimmy Heath, and Roy Haynes, just to name of few.