Ernest Carter (drummer)

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Ernest Carter
Birth nameErnest Carter
Also known asBoom Carter
OriginAsbury Park, New Jersey
GenresRock, jazz fusion
InstrumentsDrums, guitar, keyboards
Associated actsBruce Springsteen
E Street Band
David Sancious
Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes
Paul Butterfield Blues Band
Billy Hector

Ernest "Boom" Carter (born Asbury Park, New Jersey) is an American drummer. He has toured and recorded with, among others, Bruce Springsteen, David Sancious, Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes and Paul Butterfield.[1] During his time with Springsteen, he played the drums on the song "Born to Run". Able to play all forms of rock as well as rhythm and blues, soul and jazz, Carter was formally trained and blends a variety of styles into his drumming.[2] His successor as the drummer with the E Street Band, Max Weinberg later said that Carter devised a jazz fusion part for "Born to Run" that he could never reproduce in concert, and eventually stopped attempting. Although best known as a drummer, Carter is also a guitarist, keyboardist and vocalist and in 2001 he released a solo album, Temple of Boom, singing and playing all of the instruments.[3]

Early years[edit]

Carter was born and raised in Asbury Park, New Jersey. As a teenager he excelled in track and field as well as learning to become an accomplished drummer. He gained the nickname "Boom" when police were summoned to his basement after receiving a report of gunshots being fired. When they arrived on the scene, they found the young Carter practicing his drumming.[3] He was a childhood friend of David Sancious and in the early 1970s they moved to Richmond, Virginia where they worked as session musicians at Alpha Studios. They also performed in a band called Cinnamon and recorded some demos with Garry Tallent. Producer/songwriter Wes Farrell owned the rights to these demos and in 1976 he released them as David Sancious. After Sancious and Tallent were recruited by Bruce Springsteen to help record his debut Greetings From Asbury Park, N.J., Carter moved to Atlanta, Georgia and then toured with Little Royal & The Swing Masters, a James Brown-influenced band.[2]

Bruce Springsteen[edit]

In February 1974 when Vini Lopez left the E Street Band, David Sancious helped recruit Carter as his replacement. He auditioned for the job in a house belonging to the parents of Garry Tallent and then made his debut with the band on February 23 during a concert at the Satellite Lounge in Cookstown, New Jersey. He accompanied Springsteen during an early part of the Born to Run tour and in August 1974 he also helped record the song "Born to Run" at the 914 Sound Studios. He made his final appearance with the band on August 14 at the Carlton Theater in Red Bank, New Jersey.[2][4]

David Sancious & Tone[edit]

In August 1974 David Sancious and Carter left the E Street Band and, together with Gerald Carboy (bass), formed their own jazz fusion band called Tone. At various times the band would also feature Patti Scialfa, Gayle Moran and Alex Ligertwood. They signed a recording contract with Epic Records and their 1975 debut album Forest Of Feelings was produced by Billy Cobham. Another album, Transformation: Speed Of Love, followed in 1976, and a third album, Dance Of The Age Of Enlightenment, was also recorded. However a dispute between Epic and new label, Arista Records, over ownership rights meant it would not be released until 2004. One more Tone album, True Stories, came out in 1978 but the band subsequently broke up. [3][4]

Other artists[edit]

During the late 1970s Carter also played with several bands on the Jersey Shore, including Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes. He later played with the Lord Gunner Group, a power rock band led by Lance Larson (lead vocals, guitar) and Ricky DeSarno (lead guitarist). He was the first of three notable drummers to play with the band. He was succeeded by Vini Lopez who was in turn succeeded by Tico Torres.[5][6] In 1978 Carter toured with the Paul Butterfield Blues Band and played with them on the German TV show Rockpalast.[7] During the 1980s he performed and recorded with a Jersey Shore blues band, Billy Hector & The Fairlanes. In the early 1980s he performed with the Woodstock, N.Y. rock band, Brian Greene and Direct Drive. On August 14, 1987 Bruce Springsteen joined The Fairlanes as a guest during a performance at The Stone Pony in Asbury Park, New Jersey. The set included a version of "Savin’ Up", a Springsteen original recorded by Clarence Clemons.[2][8] Carter later relocated to the San Francisco Bay Area where he worked with Harvey Mandel, Pete Sears, John Lee Hooker, Danny Click, J.C. Flyer, and Clarence Clemons. He has also been the drummer in the house band at the BAM music award show, the Bammies .[3]


  • Ernest Carter
    • Temple of Boom (2001)
  • Bruce Springsteen
  • David Sancious & Tone
    • Forest Of Feelings (1975)
    • Transformation: Speed Of Love (1976)
    • True Stories (1978)
    • Dance Of The Age Of Enlightenment (2004)
  • David Sancious
    • David Sancious (1977) (unauthorized)
    • Just As I Thought (1979)
    • The Bridge (1980)
  • Southside Johnny & The Asbury Jukes
  • Billy Hector & The Fairlanes
    • Hit The Road (1986)
    • All The Way Live (1987)
  • Selected others


  1. ^ "Recording sessions and live concerts". Archived from the original on 2011-09-27. Retrieved 2011-10-09.
  2. ^ a b c d Charles R. Cross: Backstreets - Springsteen:The Man And His Music (1989)
  3. ^ a b c d "JC Flyer". Retrieved 2011-10-09.
  4. ^ a b Patrick Humphries and Chris Hunt: Springsteen - Blinded By The Light (1985)
  5. ^ Backstreets #31 Winter 1990
  6. ^ Archived January 19, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ "Rockpalast Archiv - 3.Rocknight 1978 English". Retrieved 2011-10-09.
  8. ^ "Billy Hector - All The Way". Archived from the original on 2011-10-06. Retrieved 2011-10-09.