Joe Carter started guitar studies at an early age, eventually focusing on Jazz. While earning B.A. and M.A. degrees in Jazz Performance and starting his Jazz Ph.D. studies at New York University he studied privately with guitarists Sal Salvador, John Scofield, Allan Hanlon, saxophonist Lee Konitz and pianist Don Friedman. After several performance and teaching trips to Brazil his current specialty is Brazilian Jazz, combining Straightahead and Bebop styles of Jazz with Samba, Bossa Nova and Northeast styles of Brazilian music.
His latest two CDs showcase his familiarity with Brazilian music; UM ABRACO NO RIO (An Embrace Of Rio) was recorded in Rio de Janeiro with Brazilian musicians. World reknown harmonica virtuoso Mauricio Einhom, bassist Luis Alves and drummer Joao Cortez have previously performed with Joe Carter in different group settings on Joe's various performance trips to Brazil. THE SAMBA RIO TRIO CD is Joe Carter's U.S. version of his group utilizing the talents of two of the better known Brazilian artists residing in New York: bassist Nilson Matta and legendary drummer Portinho.
Two recordings that illustrate Joe Carter's staightahead Jazz playing are DUETS which features Carter in a guitar/bass duo setting with Rufus Reid and Harvie Swartz and ART FARMER & LEE KONITZ WITH THE JOE CARTER TRIO & QUARTET which pairs Carter with Art Farmer and Lee Konitz along with Harvie Swartz and Akira Tana.
During the course of his career Joe Carter has recorded and/or performed with Jazz artists such as Art Farmer, Lee Konitz, Cecil Payne, Rufus Reid, Harvie Swartz. Akira Tana, Stafford James, Richard Wyands, Don Friedman, Hendrik Meurkens, Steve Kuhn, Eddie Bert, Mike Longo, Nabil Totah, Ray Mosca, David Finck, Bill Hardman, Junior Cook, Jamil Nasser and Al Harewood among others; and with Brazilian Jazz artists such as Mauricio Einhom, Robertinho Silva, Luis Eca, Luis Alves, Paulo Russo, Joao Cortez, Claudio Caribe, Alosio Aguiar, Nilson Matta, Portinho, Jehovah de Gaita and others.