The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

The student media organization of California State University Northridge

Daily Sundial

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Life, bass and music with Carter Wallace

Carter Wallace’s excitement grew as we talked about art and music. He smiled, turned and ran directly to the grass, to do his favorite stunt: a cartwheel. The green grass contrasted with his pink outfit. The sun sparkled in the reflection of his heart and star-shaped piercings.

The 21-year-old junior music major, talks eagerly about the subjects that interest him. Philosophy, politics, Latin culture, poetry, music and all forms of art find their way into his daily conversations.

He has played bass at CSUN in the Jazz “A” band since his sophomore year, under the direction of professor Matt Harris. Last year the band won first-place at the 2005 Reno Jazz Festival, after competing against 10 other four-year college bands.

Wallace remains altruistic in his expression and interpretation of art. He said his soul is driven by the exploration for new ideas, and that he instills this in his music because he wants to bring justice and truth to all generations.

He was exposed to music from a young age. His father, former musician William Henry Wallace, laid the groundwork for Carter’s future. He said his father instilled in him a “hunger for truth.”

His multifaceted abilities have helped him in his demanding role in the music department. His friends say that these abilities together with his endearing personality make him someone who is easy to get along with.

“He is an extremely passionate, intelligent, and fun loving person, who exudes confidence and friendliness,” said Virgile Borderies, long time friend of Wallace.

The music department saw these qualities and the ability to expand on them, awarded him a scholarship and admitted him to the competitive program the same day he came to interview.

“It is very unusual to admit someone to the department the same day, but he displayed a lot of potential, which is why I took him in right away” said Gary Pratt, associate professor of music at CSUN, and Wallace’s private jazz instructor.

Pratt said he envisions a successful future for the young musician. He added that music is not Wallace’s only talent; he is also a well-spoken and well-read individual.

Wallace came to CSUN from San Jose three years ago, after graduating from Los Gatos High School. He said the public school was prestigious but not a very tolerant place,

“People come out like a cookie-cutter,” said Wallace.

Most students tried to fall under the same umbrella by acting cool and lacked individuality, he said.

However, it was at Los Gatos High School where he found best friends and members of his band The Sacred Dice.

Wallace spends most of his time away from school with his band. They perform, tour and attend to as many music festivals as they can.

He loves touring, and says it is his favorite thing to do because he can spend the entire time doing what he loves.

Touring is much more than just playing music for the band, he said. They also read poetry, have fun, dance, and engage in honest confrontations with peers as they cross the country, said Wallace.

The Sacred Dice’s influences include bands such as U2, The Flaming Lips, Phish and Bob Dylan. It is also on his tours where he feeds his “hunger for truth.” Therefore, getting to know his country is very important to him.

The poor quality of life Wallace has encountered in his trips across the country has made an impact on him. He said places such as the Midwest, have a high number of people who are overweight and lack education.

He said one of his most heart breaking experiences was when he met a single 22-year-old mother of two, who had no teeth (probably a result of her drug abuse), at a truck stop in Kentucky. After meeting her he felt more committed to being an artist.

Wallace hopes to contribute to a better future for the unfortunates through his music.

Carla Acevedo can be reached at

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