Monday, July 4, 2011
Duarte was first inspired by music at age 8 after seeing Fiddler On The Roof on television. Duarte began playing his brother's guitar, and got his first electric guitar at the age of 14 and played with bands in San Antonio. In 1979, Duarte moved to Austin, Texas and purchased a 1963 Fender Stratocaster guitar for $500. Duarte began exploring the jazz music of John Coltrane and Miles Davis.
Duarte won a label recording contract with Silvertone Records and released Texas Sugar/Strat Magik in 1994, and was named "Best New Talent" in Guitar Player’s 1995 Reader's Poll. He finished fourth in the magazine’s "Best Blues Guitarist" category behind Eric Clapton, Buddy Guy and B.B. King.
Though Duarte has played a limited number of U.S. dates in recent years with the Japanese band Bluestone Company backing him, he performs primarily as a power trio, the 'Chris Duarte Group'. Originally formed with long-time friends and collaborators John Jordan on bass and Jeff Hodges on drums, the current incarnation features Matt Stallard on bass and Chris Burroughs on drums. Apart from his band, Duarte has performed with Julie Burrell, Diana Cantu, Bobby Mack, Tracy Conover, Indigenous, and Omar & the Howlers.
Duarte's concert dates in Asheville, Charlotte and Greenville were filmed for "The PBS Project". This side-project featured Steve Bailey on bass and Jeff Sipe on drums.