Karl Sterling
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Karl Sterling

Band Jazz R&B


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"Peter Erskine's Review of the new ESP CD, "TIME'S UP!""

"I first met Karl Sterling when his parents brought him to a Stan Kenton Orchestra gig in upstate New York. He was a young drummer. This was 1972. Come to think of it, I was a young drummer at the time, too ... but Karl was younger! Karl's parents were justifiably proud of their son and how well he played. Some thirty five-plus years later, I'm the one who is feeling proud of how well Karl plays: proud that he stayed the course with his drumming, and proud that he matured into such a terrific drummer and human being. Karl is also heavily involved with the Syracuse Jazz Network, as well as with fundraising for charities and other good causes. By comparison, I feel a bit like a one trick pony: I still just play the drums.

Karl and his musical colleagues Brian Scherer, John Magnante, Matthew Vacanti and Barry Blumenthal have created a CD that's rewarding to listen to. Whether this is an introduction to their music or a souvenir from a "live" gig, you will enjoy the music on this album!

Bravo, Karl and company."

Peter Erskine - Peter Erskine

"Seaflight Releases New CD"

Chad Lefkowitz-Brown just graduated from Horseheads High School.

Yet Central New York music veterans Jason Kessler, Jeff Guevin and Karl Sterling named their quartet Seaflight featuring Chad Lefkowitz-Brown.

He's that good on alto and tenor sax.

Guitarist Kessler wrote or co-wrote the 11 songs on "New Horizons."

He's given all the musicians ample opportunity to show their best with intricate and intriguing passages.

What results is a very sweet chemistry with sax, guitar, Guevin's bass and Sterling's drums.

"D-Funk" weaves Kessler's acoustic guitar work into the jazz fabric in fine style.

"Overdrive" shifts into a cool and contemporary groove.

"Flat Five Jive" allows Lefkowitz-Brown's sax to jump.

The title cut rings golden with Kessler's great guitar work.
- Post-Standard August 03, 2008, by Mark Bialczak


Frank Stagnitta - "Wish" (2009)
E.S.P. - "Times Up" (2009)
John Magnante - "Standards" (2008)
Three For All - "Three For All" (2008)
Phillip Golub - "Phillip Golub" (2008)
Seaflight - "New Horizons" (2008)
Dana Marcine - "Love is Funny" (2006)
Classified - "Classified Live" (2000)



Karl Sterling is a very versatile and highly sought after drummer in the New York area, for both live performances and recording sessions.

Born in Ithaca, New York Karl has spent the majority of his life in the Syracuse, NY area. Having grown up in a musical household, it was a natural thing for Karl to take to music and drums, in particular. Both of Karl's parents attended the Ithaca College School of Music. Karl's father, Bob Sterling is a drummer, composer/arranger, and leader of several successful bands in the Central New York area for many years. His mother, Helen majored in vocal studies at Ithaca College and is also a talented pianist.

It was in 1970 when Karl was 9 years old that he first saw legendary drummer Buddy Rich. At that very point he KNEW the drums were his instrument and started seriously studying and practicing. His first teacher was his father and after 4 years, at the age of 13, he started playing gigs with his dad's band. Karl also met and became friends with drummer Peter Erskine in 1972 at age 11. Peter had just graduated from high school and was on his first tour with the Stan Kenton Band. Peter and Karl have remained friends and stayed in touch with each other now for over 36 years!

Karl attended Onondaga Community College for 2 years majoring in music and studying percussion with John Barker. Karl has also studied drums with Mick Lewander, Danny D'Imperio, Joe Morello, Mike Melito, Wilby Fletcher, and Peter Erskine.

In addition to being published several times in "Modern Drummer" magazine , Karl has had the good fortune to play and record with many wonderful musicians and bands in the Syracuse, Rochester, and New York City area's including; Ronnie Leigh, Nancy Kelly, ESP, Frank Stagnitta, Dino Losito, Jeff Palmer, Devin Garramone, Andy Calabrese, Rick Montalbano, Ron France, Bob DiBaudo, John Rohde, Mark Copani, Larry Arlotta, Joy Adler, Mala Waldron, Steve Salerno, Miriam Sullivan, Classified, Eye Level, Moss, Prime Time, Seaflight, Diamond in the Rough, Dave Hanlon's Cookbook, John Puma, Rick Sheppard and "The Drifters" and many others.