By: Dixie Refearn: The Seal Beach Sun Newspaper


What happens to a musically-inclined kid who grew up listening to Jazz greats like Miles Davis and John Coltrane, but with a rebel heart?  

Scott Carter absorbed those influences, and then moved from Cambridge, Massachusetts, to the Bay Area when his jazz-loving father was transferred across the country. There, the precocious boy – not yet a teenager -- witnessed the San Francisco scene, complete with its musical influences: Janis Joplin, Jimmy Hendrix, Sly and the Family Stone.  

The musical prodigy (he picked up drums at 9 years old, then guitar a year later) fine-tuned his taste, and his talent, and eventually realized music and performing would be his life.  

Today, Carter plays around the southland; venues seek him out in Long Beach, Huntington Beach, Palm Desert and Los Angeles. Scott Carter and The New Breed perform everything from Carter’s original music to covers from genres like rock ‘n’ roll, rhythm and blues, and even pop. Carter’s latest project is his CD, “Living in the Moment.” While he sings all the vocals on the CD, Carter also plays most of the instruments, putting him in an upper echelon of performers who can “do it all.” That includes writing the music and lyrics as well.  

A story about a musician producing music is not unique, but Carter has another mission besides entertaining  which careful listeners will pick up on between the lines.  He is in recovery from drugs and alcohol.  

“I prefer to put it out there that I’m in recovery,” Carter said. “It is an important part of my life and many of my songs reflect that.”  

The years from 1985 to 1991 were dark for Carter. Drugs and alcohol consumed him – as music once did – and he had to dig himself out of a very deep hole to survive. Despite interventions and pleas from friends and family, it was finally Carter’s mother who convinced him to save his life and go into rehab in New Hampshire. He got sober there, and now boasts about his 24 years of sobriety – made all the more amazing by living a life in the entertainment industry, often performing in bars and nightclubs.  

“Living in the Moment” crosses a few genres, making it exciting to listen to, and challenges the listener with its compelling lyrics.  

Some songs, like “Hole in Her Heart” and “Eye of the Storm” hint at recovery and have a singer/songwriter feel, while others are jazzy, or have reggae undertones. When listening to the complexities of the beats it is even more noteworthy to realize that Carter’s instrumental ability is vast and tightly delivered. The fact he also writes the music and lyrics makes him a standout in the music business. Few are talented in almost every single aspect of bringing ideas to musical fruition. Add to that the fact he does his own publicity and marketing and the release of “Living in the Moment” becomes a stellar achievement.  

The CD is available on CD Baby, Amazon and iTunes, and also sold where Carter performs. He is on Facebook as scottcartersongs.