Award winning guitarist/composer
Somewhere Else is my ninth album and is based on that feeling of that longing to be in another place that we all experience from time to time. I live in London, on the other side of the world from my family in Australia, and, while I enjoy living in London, I think about Australia every day. I am sure that many people must feel the same way about their family far away.
"Carl Orr is a friend and a great guitarist who played in the Last Ship band on the British tour. Check out his new album 'Somewhere Else'"
"Carl Orr's new CD is a winner in all respects. Great tunes, playing and minimalistic, clean production. Every track takes you on a trip to 'Somewhere Else!' Bravo."
"Mr Orr and his amazing music"
"A beautiful, sensitive trip around the planet in Carl Orr’s very comfortable and well equipped vehicle.”
"Carl Orr plays his ass off"
"Somewhere Else is a thing of beauty"
"What a joy to be anywhere and listen to guitarist and composer Carl Orr’s latest album, Somewhere Else. My God, each of his albums is better than the last. Somewhere Else is a truly moving musical statement that just doesn’t run the gamut - it creates new ones. I can’t get over how brilliant this recording is… "
Walter Kolosky(John McLaughlinBiographer)
Guitarist, composer and Sting sideman Carl Orr was kind enough to write a five-star review of my Sting book this week. It was great to see the book get a ‘thumbs up’ from Carl, who I respect. greatly as a musician and have seen perform a couple of times when performing Sting’s The Last Ship during its initial tour, including the inaugural performance at Northern Stage on March 12 2018. Carl played some magnificent guitar that evening, so I was interested to find out more about him.
When looking at his backstory, it is obvious Carl has a fantastic pedigree. Born in Newcastle, growing up Australia, then moving to London in the early ‘90s, by which time his CV was already very impressive, having studied at Berklee College of Music and worked with many name jazz musicians – including Billy Cobham.
Since moving to London, he has released six solo albums, which are incredibly eclectic stylistically. Although broadly falling into the ‘jazz’ category, his music can be placed within the genre’s tradition by engaging with influences ranging from that of The Brecker Bros (‘Swamp Thing’), later Miles Davies (‘Still Life’), to more traditional jazz (Deep Down), to his most recent album and the main subject of this post – Somewhere Else (2019)
After spending time listening to it this week, I would say his Something Else album takes the listener on a journey of escapism, both in terms of the imaginary landscapes of tracks such as ‘Katie‘ (written for his daughter) and ‘Somewhere Else‘ (which reminds me of Tim Garland’s recent work, depicting the North East of England – listen to ‘Lady of the North‘), to the more ‘place centred’ textures of tracks such as ‘Analyse‘ (a Radiohead cover), ‘Fayah‘, and ‘Ride the Camel‘, which have more specific semiological relationships with India, Africa and ‘the Middle East’ respectively, due to the purposeful use of musical textures related to those regions (‘Ride the Camel’ features my old guitar teacher Stuart Hall).
Compositions aside, it is also noticeably that Orr is a ‘special guitarist’, who if I was to describe his work in one word— it would be TASTE. This is something that no amount of musical training can manifest. As with all of his work, Carl performs equally as proficiently on acoustic as he does on electric and although he can ‘shred’ (listen to the Cobham track above), he is also capable of ‘playing the spaces’ by manifesting a ‘less is more’ idiolect. One of the first things one notices when listening to his music, is that he appears to place a lot of emphasis on melody—both in terms of his compositions and his guitar playing and by doing this, he engages with the listener on many levels—be it from simply ‘singing the tune’, to marvelling at the technical proficiency and competency of his artistry, to being ‘lost’ in textures, melodies, rhythms and timbres of tracks such as the title track – ‘Somewhere Else’. Indeed I challenge anyone reading this post to listen to this track and while doing so – just consider the places it takes you – open fields, across oceans, through wooded landscapes, looking at ones home from a distance – they are all possible. Once the Covid19 pandemic is out of the way and public gatherings are possible again, I would love to see this guy perform his own material live, which I am sure will bring some of these imaginary landscapes even closer – fantastic!
Paul Carr, Sting Biographer paulcarr.org
Welcome to the brand new website
Welcome to my brand new website. Please enjoy the site, you can get my latest news or listen to and purchase my albums right here.
To purchase a CD of 'Somewhere Else' please click on the Buy Now button. £12 incl postage worldwide. To purchase as a download scroll down to "Buy album" or simply enjoy listening from the player.
Carl is available for concerts, gigs, in-person or internet guitar lessons, master classes and recording sessions.
You can reach Carl via the contact page for more details.