About Me

A native of rural Central New York, saxophonist/bandleader/composer Paul Carlon has been active on the New York City jazz and Latin jazz scenes since 1991. Paul has since traveled the world performing, teaching, and recording with a wide range of artists including Juan Pablo Torres, Harvie S, Tony Allen, Grupo los Santos, Rumbatap, Sonido Isleño, Swingadelic, Clave y Guaguancó, the McCarron Brothers, the Ileana Santamaría Orchestra, and Phil Woods, as well as leading his own groups. Paul has also appeared in film, on television and on the radio, and has written music for film and served as Musical Director of various groups. He completed a Master’s Degree in Music Composition at The City College of New York in 2005, where he studied with Mike Holober, John Patitucci and American master David Del Tredici.

Paul’s main musical fascinations, both improvisationally and compositionally, are the history and tradition of innovation and of swing in jazz, and the music of the Afro-Latin diaspora. An avowed Ellington/Strayhorn fanatic, Paul is equally captivated by Los Van Van, Pixinguinha, Charles Mingus, Stravinsky, Gene Ammons, Lenine, Eva Ayllón, Muddy Waters, and Gil Evans, among many others. A fluent speaker of Portuguese, Paul has spent time in Brazil and also in Cuba and Colombia, immersing himself culturally and artistically in the search for understanding. His compositions express this wide range of interests, diffracted through the lens of the jazz stylists and composers that have been an obsession from an early age.

Below you can find the main groups I'm working and creating music with; you can also find more info on the menu bar at the left.

Check out my blog, called Weirdlatin.


Looking Up

My first, self-produced CD, released in 2000. A quartet recording, Looking Up features guitarist Pete Smith and drummer William "Beaver" Bausch from Grupo los Santos as well as Grammy-winning bassist Phil Bowler. The song "Soul Soliloquy" from the CD was included in the made-for-cable street basketball documentary "On Hallowed Ground".

On Hallowed Ground Webpage

Looking Up on CD Baby

The Paul Carlon Octet/La Rumba Is A Lovesome Thing

I formed this band in 2002 out of the desire to write music for a larger group. Over time I added a vocalist, and also worked Rumbatap dancer/body percussionist Max Pollak into the mix, so the group outgrew its Octet britches. Our latest project, two years in the making, is a tribute to Billy Strayhorn called La Rumba Is A Lovesome Thing, to be release on Zoho Music July 9, 2013. The group has traveled extensively in the Northeast and performs regularly in NYC.

La Rumba Is A Lovesome Thing Page on Zoho website

The McCarron Brothers

The McCarron Brothers is the newest group I'm performing with. Formed as a rehearsal band in the Fall of 2006, we've been mixing up an atmospheric blend of Scofield funk and Bitches Brew fusion, Frisell-ish country, Radiohead, and free jazz ever since.

The McCarron Brothers website