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Creole Soul

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iTunes Review

Trumpeter Etienne Charles is in fine form on his fourth solo album, Creole Soul. A number of Caribbean musical styles inform the Trinidad-born musician’s take on jazz, and his core group—tenor saxophonist Jacques Schwarz-Bart, alto saxophonist Brian Hogans, keyboardist Kris Bowers, bassist Ben Williams, and drummer Obed Calvaire—are all in. The album starts with Vodun priest Erol Josue intoning a chant in the Haitian language of Kwéyol. The band creates a groove that ripples with percussive hits and is fueled by Williams' propulsive bass. Up top, Charles lets loose a sparkling solo. “Memories”—written by Winsford “Joker” Devine and recorded by calypso legend Mighty Sparrow—finds Charles playing the melody with a lovely, burnished tone. Thelonious Monk's “Green Chimneys” from the 1968 album Underground gets updated in a fashion that smooths out the zigzagging lines, while a rendering of Bob Marley’s “Turn Your Lights Down Low” incorporates reggae rhythms and keeps a mellow vibe throughout. The bop burner “Doin’ the Thing” closes the album on an energetic note.

Customer Reviews

Creole Soul

Once again Etienne Charles has hit it out of the park,with his powerful trumpet lines,his use of his Trinidad roots,its an exceptional cd,and I dont care where you are from,once you are a jazz lover,trumpet lover,or quality music person.Creole Soul is for you,wow.

Gorgeous global post-bop fusion

Amazing global post-bop. Like a bigger band trumpet-led Weather Report, but it's still its own thing.


Etienne is a great new(ish) voice on the scene. His lines are beautiful and this group really grooves. High recommend!!!


Born: 1983 in Trinidad

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Etienne Charles is a trumpeter, bandleader, composer, and educator. Rooted in both the jazz and Afro-Caribbean folk traditions of his native Trinidad, his music is somewhat mercurial, but always accessible and inviting. He also plays steel drums and cuatro. Charles comes from a long line of musicians dating back four generations. He learned the cuatro from his grandfather, Ralph Charles, a highly regarded stylist on the instrument who can be heard on the Growling Tiger recordings. Etienne's first...
Full Bio
Creole Soul, Etienne Charles
View In iTunes
  • $9.99
  • Genres: Jazz, Music, World
  • Released: Jul 09, 2013

Customer Ratings