Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local News

November 27, 2009

Carter enjoys role as side man

Ashland — Local musician Jeff Carter doesn’t want to be in the spotlight, although he likes to stay close enough to it to feel the heat.

Carter, 39, the son of Bruce and Karen Carter, grew up in the Lloyd community and developed an initial interest in music as a natural part of life around the family home.

“Music was always around the house. There was music all around. My dad played sax in high school and I remember him playing guitar learning to play bluegrass,” Carter said.

His own love of woodwind instruments was born at the age of 12 when he was among a group of sixth-grade students who attended an introduction-to-band session. The saxophone was his immediate choice when asked what he might be interested in learning to play.

“It seemed kind of cool — it did,” he said, recalling the moment and his preference for the horn his father played in school.

Great woodwind players require extensive practice during their first few years, and Carter said he was no exception.

“No one is ever good right away, at least not with woodwind instruments,” he said, explaining the difficulty of developing good tone on such an instrument compared to the relative ease of striking a single note on a piano or guitar. “All you have to do is listen to any beginning band to know that’s true.”

Carter said he recently came across a recording of himself playing saxophone during the formative years, and was excited to hear the tape — until he hit the play button.

“That’s a good way to be humbled,” he said with a chuckle, shaking his head from side to side.

While many perceive Carter as a multi-instrumentalist (he does play clarinet and flute as well piano), he says he is really a single-instrument man.

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