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.
Baltimore guitarist Carl Filipiak records for his own small label,
Geometric Records, which is probably the reason he’s not better known
outside the Baltimore-D.C metroplex. Too bad, because the dude can
Filipiak’s music is probably too brawny for the
smooth jazz crowd, but hardcore fusion fans should warm up to it
instantly. The guitarist displays a Methenyesque sense of melody and
improvisation while infusing his jazz with elements of rock, funk, Latin
and blues. His latest release Peripheral Vision offers material from all four of his previous albums, plus one new track ("Forest Flower").
presence of Bob Berg and Dennis Chambers helps lift the recording.
Chambers pounds the skins on all 11 tracks, while Berg adds his
slithering sax to three cuts. On some tunes, Filipiak shifts dexterously
between electric guitar, acoustic guitar and guitar synth. Besides
displaying a keen sense of melody and improvisation, he occasionally
cranks up the distortion and rocks out in a jazzy style reminiscent of
Jeff Beck. In fact, his cover of "Cause We Ended As Lovers" is nearly as
uplifting as Beck’s. Another highlight is the original composition
"Nuji," a funky fusion-bop piece.
If you’re a fan of lyrical fusion guitar, you should definitely check out Carl Filipiak.
Whether firing off dazzlingly rapid hard-fusion or waxing rhapsodic
through ringing, sweet-toned chords and harmonic touches, guitarist Carl
Filipiak constantly challenges the senses on Peripheral Vision
(Geometric Records GEO-246; 72:38). The key to Filipiak's vision is
counterpoint-Caribbean tones meet driving fusion on "Hotel Real," which
packs a big, beautiful percussive wallop; and the guitarist's detailed,
sharp-cornered licks on "Song for Irene" contrast the piece's quiet,
jazz-walk setting for a touching emotional feel. Other highlights
include a tight take on Jimi Hendrix's oft-covered "Little Wing," with
Dennis Chambers providing a hesitant, distant-feeling drum punch which
opens unique spaces for Filipiak to experiment with harmonies; and
"Forest Flower," with its unexpectedly rocking, high-stepping setting,
which lends the tune a feeling of resilience.
Peripheral Vision is a compilation of three
previously released discs by jazz guitarist Carl Filipiak on the
Geometric label. Latin, funk, and fusion are mixed with jazz on these 11
tracks including drummer Dennis Chambers and saxophonist Bob Berg.
Along with several original compositions, Filipiak also pays tribute to
his major influences Jimi Hendrix and Jeff Beck. An eight-minute "Little
Wing" and Beck's version of Stevie Wonder's "Cause We've Ended As
Lovers" are covered.
I have all of Carl Filipiak's work, and this CD is a great starting
point for fans of rock, jazz, or fusion. The musicianship on this album
is unsurpassed with drumming by Dennis Chambers on every track, and
more importantly Carl's guitar playing which is phenomenal. I highly
reccomend this album to anyone interested in jazz with a great rock edge
as well. Its a must have!
Not only is Carl Filipiak an absolutely amazing guitarist, his
songwriting skills are top notch. add to that the fact that he has
personally taught just about every good guitarist who has come out of
Baltimore in recent years. he is a must see live as well - shows are
always spontaneous and engaging...
This release from Geometric Records combines some cuts from
Baltimore-based guitarist Carl Filipiak's excellent Hotel Reál (reviewed
favorably in the Sensible Sound upon its release several years ago)
with some older cuts, making this something of a Carl Filipiak
retrospective release. Filipiak's name may never be a household word,
but his reputation is spreading, based both on his CDs and his live
performances. He is a tasteful performer who does not try to overwhelm
the music he is playing by engaging in virtuosic overkill; still, his
technique is formidable, as a listen to his version of Jimi Hendrix's
"Little Wing" readily reveals. He can also be quite lyrical, as he shows
on his cover of Stevie Wonder's "'Cause We've Ended as Lovers."
Peripheral Vision offers a good overview of the work of this talented
and versatile guitarist; I urge jazz guitar fans to check it out. By
Karl W. Nehring
Filipiak's musical style can easily be described in just one word-
killin'. His unique tones and creative runs make his style of playing
seem above the label "fusion." Soroka's performance on sax is
outstanding and appropraite, and the use of lyricon adds a layer that
dives into exciting new grounds. Dennis Chambers is on fire as he lays
down beats that are relaxing as a sunset on Malibu, and other times
thrilling as a triple-crown winning horse. Perhaps if Carl's music
becomes more and more recognized in years to come, fusion jazz may
become more recognized, while at the same time unspoiled as it melts
into the mainstream. As one of Carl's students, I definetely feel Carl's
music should be heard at more than an underground level. And with music
becoming ever so easier to obtain, it almost seems inevitable.
01 Hotel Real
03 Little Wing
04 Song for Irene
05 Right on Time
06 Blue Entrance
07 Cause We've Ended as Lovers
08 Two PM
09 Say You Were
11 Forest Flower
Carl Filipiak (guitar);
Bob Berg (saxophone);
Paul Soroka (keyboards);
Dennis Chambers (drums);
Greg Grainger, Victor Williams (percussion).