Desert Island Jazz
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  • Charlie McCarthy (2009)
    Saxophonist Charlie McCarthy is a native Californian: in fact, he's a native of the Bay Area.

    Charlie's four years in the Air Force were sandwiched between periods studying music. He began right here at the College of San Mateo, moved on to San Francisco State where he was part of a quintet that won the inter-collegiate music festival, and eventually on to Berklee in Boston on a scholarship, where he studied with trumpeter Herb Pomeroy and vibist Gary Burton.

    Apart from a brief flirtation with real estate (one which ended both rapidly and with mutual agreement), Charlie has always worked in music. He's performed or recorded with many of the greats, including instrumentalists Joe Henderson, Bobby Hutcherson, George Shearing and Stan Getz, and vocalists Ella Fitzgerald, Joe Williams, Sarah Vaughan and Frank Sinatra.

    Of Charlie's "name" gigs, his first was traveling to Hawaii with Van Morrison, and his most pleasurable, and one of the longest, was international travel as the only horn in the quintet accompanying vocal legend Lena Horne, about whom Charlie has nothing but good things to say: in fact, he describes that time as "one of my best experiences".

    What with his teaching at San Francisco City College and at Stanford University, and his performing with groups large (e.g., Broadway shows, and the Symphony) and small (e.g., Al Molina's Latin bebop band, and Mark Levine's nonet), Charlie is a very busy man indeed. In fact, he's someone for whom the desert island provides a welcome break.
    Pick Artist Album Song Label
    # 1 Lester Young Ken Burns Jazz Oh, Lady Be Good (Verve)
    # 2 John Coltrane The First Trane Time Was (Prestige)
    # 3 Yusef Lateef Eastern Sounds SNAFU (Prestige)
    # 4 Lee Morgan Delightfullee Cal-Lee-So (Blue Note)
    # 5 Freddie Hubbard Blue Spirits Outer Forces (Blue Note)
    # 6 John Pattitucci Communion The Sower (Concord)
    # 7 Stefano di Battista Round about Roma The Next Nine Hours (Blue Note)
    # 8 Chico Pinheiro and Luciana Alves Meia Noite, Meia Dia Ao Vento (Art Music/Sony)
    Book The encyclopedia, perhaps just the letter "E"
    Luxury Item A bottle of really good tequila
    Castaways by date
    George Cotsirilos
    09 Feb
    Ed Klitsch
    05 Jan