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Joe McCarthy

Lecturer in Music: Drum Set & Jazz Combo

M.M., Percussion Performance, University of North Texas, 1992
B.M., Percussion Performance, Hartt School of Music, University of Hartford, 1988


MUS 263: Applied Music: Percussion & Drum Set
MUS 475: W.C. Jazz Combo

Professional Experience

 In demand as both performer and educator, Joe McCarthy’s diverse career has taken him from Symphony Orchestra and Big Band, to Afro Cuban, Bebop, and beyond. Joe is the leader/founder of the Grammy Award® winning Afro Bop Alliance, an Afro Cuban Jazz Ensemble based in the Washington DC area. Afro Bop is featured on the Caribbean Jazz ProjectCD Afro Bop Alliance released on Heads-Up International, winner of the 2008 Grammy® for Latin Jazz Album of the year and nominated for the 51st Grammy® Awards in the same category. The bands latest release, “Una Más, has been realsed on OA2 Records. The band’s 2 previous releases, “Encarnacion and “Camino Nuevo have received critical acclaim, worldwide.

Joe has performed and or recorded with: Paquito D’ Rivera, Conrad Herwig, Roland Vazquez, Samuel Torres, Oscar Stagnaro, Tom Scott, Chuck Findley, Aretha Franklin, The Caribbean Jazz Project, Eddie Daniels, Slide Hampton, Pat LaBarbera, Wayne Bergeron, Linda Oh, Luis Perdomo, Antonio Hart, Poncho Sanchez, Dave Samuels, Arturo O’Farrill, Michael Mossman, Ray Vega, Jimmy Bruno, Luques and Zaccai Curtis, Mundell Lowe, Alain Mallet, Christian Howes, Roberto Quintero, Boris Kozlov and Arturo Stables. Joe is the Chief in Charge and Drummer of the United States Naval Academy Band’s Jazz Ensemble, The Next Wave and former Principal Percussionist of the USNA Band’s Wind Ensemble. The Next Wave releases include, “Just Gettin’ Started” and “Excellentia Cansaciata”.

Joe is also co-leader of the Vince Norman/Joe McCarthy Big Band with their 2007 release of Words Cannot Express and 2010 release of “Bright Future, on OA2 Records.

Active in education, Joe is also an Adjunct Professor of Drumset and Afro-Cuban Percussion Studies at Georgetown University in Washington DC and George Mason University in Fair fax VA. Joe is in demand as a clinician throughout the US and abroad. He has been a featured clinician/performer at the Percussive Arts Society International Convention, the Jazz Educators Network International Convention and at many of the nation’s leading musical institutions . He has written for Jazz Improv Magazine, Latin Percussion’s “All About Rhythm” and has contributed to the educational websites of Alfred Music, Zildjian and Vic Firth. Joe’s “Afro-Cuban Big Band Play-Along Series Book/CD and DVDs, are published by Alfred Music and have received rave reviews. 


Joe McCarthy is Proud to Endorse