Guitarist and vocalist Karl Louis Weismantel was born into an academic family with a father, William, who was a Professor of Urban Planning and a mother, Martha, who is still an editor of academic materials. His only sister , Mary, is a Professor of Anthropology. While there was a bit of good music in the family record collection, the path to being a musician was a unique one for the Weismantel lineage.
In 6th grade Karl began with the trumpet and continued through 8th grade. In high school he switched to guitar as playing on the soccer team made the mandatory marching band (if you wanted to be in the jazz band) unwieldy. Karl was inspired initially by the likes of Jeff Beck, Jimi Hendrix and Jimmy Page but soon became interested in jazz around 1985. Karl studied privately with Ray Valla and Ed Legare in Gainesville, Florida and proceeded to take college music theory classes at Santa Fe Community College and the University of Florida. While Karl had good aptitude for math and engineering he eventually decided against an engineering degree and became a music major, transferring from the University of Florida to the University of North Texas in 1988. At North Texas he was exposed to many great musicians and was made very aware of how competitive the music world is. He followed Professor Jack Petersen, then at North Texas, to the University of North Florida in 1989, where he played in the top jazz ensemble and received his B.A. in Music.
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...Weismantel skillfully glides through an hour’s worth of jazz treasures, touching on early standards, mid-century piano landmarks, and post-bop experimentation. Nick McGregor - September 2008 - Drift Magazine - www.surfthedrift.com