Encyclopedia of Jazz Musicians

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Campbell Jr., Roy (Sinclair)

Campbell Jr., Roy (Sinclair), trumpeter, flugelhorn, flutist, composer, actor; b. Los Angeles, CA, 29 September 1952. His mother, Erna Arene Forte-Campbell, (b. 4/18/27, New York) was not a musician but his father, Roy Sinclair Campbell, Sr. (b. 6/12/15, New York) used to play trumpet and tenor saxophone, playing with George Hudson's band and local bands in the Midwest, and when he was in California in the early '50's, with Ornette Coleman, Art and Addison Farmer, and others. He stopped playing in the mid-50's. Roy's sister is Valerie Gladys Campbess (b. 6/14/56).
A Mr. Gueriero taught Roy violin in Olinville Junior High School (9/64-9/67).  Then Jazzmobile workshops, 1971-1973, whose teachers included Joe Newman, Lee Morgan, and Kenny Dorham.  Also Jazz Interactions workshops, 1971 & 1972, the teachers including Joe Newman and Howard McGhee.  Then Manhattan Community College, 1/72-1/75, where he was taught trumpet by Dick Vance and Leonard Goines; Yusef Lateef taught him jazz and music theory, composition, arranging, and world music.  Then he went to the Restoration Center where Genghis Nor (1074-6-76) and George Smith (9/76-78) taught him trumpet.

Roy Campbell, Jr. was born in Los Angeles in 1952, and his family moved to the Bronx, New York when he was two years old. Roy's musical journey began that year with piano lessons, initially inspired by his father, whose trumpet was the first one he used. By the time he entered high school, he was playing flute, recorder, and violin as well as trumpet.

As a young fan, Roy met Lee Morgan at the Bronxwood Inn in the late '6O's, and in 1971 Roy began participating in Jazzmobile workshops, working with jazz masters Kenny Dorham, Howard McGhee, and Lee Morgan, as well as with Howard McGhee and Joe Newman in Jazz Interactions workshops. Later, as a trumpet major at Manhattan Community College, his professors were Leonard Goines and Dick Vance, and Roy studied music theory, arranging, and composition with Yusef Lateef, graduating in 1975 with an Associate's Degree in music.

By 1972, Roy was leading his own band, Spectrum; he had just turned 2O. He was also in great demand as a sideman and studio musician. During the time from 1974 to 1976, Roy co-led with Radha Reyes a band called the Spirits of Rhythm, which included, at various times: Omar Hakim, Rodney Jones, Kenny Kirkland, J.T. Lewis, Zane Massey, Cecil McBee, Jr., Andy McCloud, Marcus Miller, Charles Neville (of the Neville Brothers), Ricardo Strobert, Rudy Walker, Kenny Washington, and Bobby Watson.

In 1978, Roy met master bassist William Parker, who invited him to join Jemeel Moondoc's Ensemble Muntu, and this association led to many dates and tours, especially in Europe. Roy's travels and worldwide exposure allowed him to develop an international following in Europe, Japan, the Caribbean Islands, and the USA. He lived in the Netherlands from 199O to 1992, working as a freelance musician and lecturer and holding conservatory workshops. He was the leader of the Thelonious New World Orchestra in Rotterdam for two years; he played with the bands of Ruud Bergamin, Klaas Hekman, and Dennis Winter; he led a Thursday-night jam session in Rotterdam; and he also played as a side man in numerous ensembles. In this period, the Eindhoven and Groningen Festivals commissioned Roy to compose music for brass ensembles. He began writing and arranging music for himself and others, and this expansion represented a new vehicle of expression for a talent that had already been hailed as "awesome."

Roy is an actor and has appeared in independent films and plays. He has performed with dancers including Leena Conquest, Aleta Hayes, K.J. Holmes, Maria Mitchell, Patricia Nicholson Parker, Nayo Takasaki, and others, as well as musical accompaniment for poets Umar bin Hassan (of the Last Poets), Steve Dalachinsky, Shirley LeFlore, Felipe Luciano (of the original Last Poets), David Nelson, Jilal Nazzarudin, and Eve Packer.

In 1988, Roy Campbell, Jr. formed a band named Tazz. The music of Tazz is a reflection of various musical styles, languages, backgrounds, and sources; the band's mission is to break down cultural barriers through a sound that is at once eclectic, progressive, polished, and funky.

Roy Campbell also leads the Pyramid Trio, which he began in 1983 and which includes music of many world cultures with a jazz overtone. In addition, he founded the collective group Other Dimensions in Music, which plays improvised music of all styles. In 1995 he formed Shades and Colors of Trane, a tribute band for master saxophonist John Coltrane, and in 1999 he added the group Downtown Horns.

Roy Campbell, Jr.'s composing, arranging, and playing embrace a wide range of roots and styles, including jazz, funk, rock, rhythm & blues, hip-hop, rap, classical, reggae, and more.

A few of the leading innovators among contemporary musicians Roy has worked with include: Rashied Ali, Billy Bang, Evelyn Blakey, Carlos Garnett, Eddie Harris, Makanda Ken McIntyre, Jemeel Moondoc, David Murray, Sunny Murray, William Parker, Hannibal Marvin Peterson, Sun Ra, Woody Shaw, Cecil Taylor, Charles Tyler, Wilbur Ware, Frank Wright, John Zorn, and a countless host of other bands and ensembles. Roy and his contemporary bands play virtually constantly in concerts, on tour, and in festivals all over the world.

In the year 2OO1, "JazzTimes" designated Roy Campbell's CD "Ethnic Stew and Brew" (Delmark 528) number three of the top 5O jazz CD's of the year. Roy was also nominated trumpeter of the year by the Jazz Journalists' Association in 2OO2.

Live in Poland (1981); Roy Campbell Sextet (1990);  "La Tierra del Fuego (1993); New Kingdom (1993); Roy Campbell Pyramid Trio: Communion (1994); Angel (1995); Jazz Music ROM (1995); Roy Campbell Pyramid Trio: Ancestral Homeland (1998) It's Krunch Time (2001); Roy Campbell Pyramid Trio: Ethnic Stew and Brew (2001);

As sideperson:
Carlos Garnett:  "Cosmos Nucleus" (1976); Jemeel Moondoc & Muntu: Evening of the Blue Man (1979); Saheb Sarbib & his Multinational Big Band: Aisha (1980), Live at the Public Theatre (1980); Wayne Horvitz: Simple Facts (1980); Rashied Ali & the Funky Freeboppers: [title unknown] (1980); Jemeel Moondoc:  New York Live (1980-81); Jemeel Moondoc Sextet: Konstanze's Delight (1981); Jemeel Moondoc & Muntu: The Intrepid (1981); The Athens Concert (1982); Ellen Christi: Stars of Destiny (1986); Billy Bang Sextet: Live at Carlos I (1986); Trudy Silver: Heroes / Heroines (1986); William Hooker Orchestra: The Colour Circle (1988); Raw Deal: Raw Deal (1988); Other Dimensions in Music: Other Dimensions in Music (1988); Ruud Bergamin RBQ: Live at Thelonious (1993); William Parker & the Little Huey Creative Music Orchestra: Flowers Grow in My Room (1994); Ehran Elisha: Sweet Empathy (1995); Ichikawa Ossam: The Monk 1995); William Parker & the Little Huey Creative Music Orchestra: Sunrise in the Tone World (1995); Visions One Compilation (1997); Other Dimensions in Music:  Now! (1997); Dave Hilliard & the Rock Steady 7: Give 'Em the Boot (1997); Yoshiki Miura: Unknown Creature (1997); Ehran Elisha: The Kicker (1998); Matthew Shipp Horn Quartet:  Strata (1998); Steve Dalachinsky: Incomplete Directions (1999); Dave Hillyard & the Rock Steady 7: Play Time (1999); Ehran Elisha: Lowe Down Suite (1999); William Parker: Fractured Dimensions (1999, unreleased); Peter Brotzmann's Die Like a Dog: From Valley to Valley (1999); Peter Brotzmann Tentet + 2: A Short Visit to Nowhere (2000), Broken English (2000); William Parker & the Little Huey Creative Music Orchestra: Mayor of Punkville (2000); Matthew Shipp Quartet: Pastoral Composure (2000); Other Dimensions in Music: Time Is of the Essence Is Beyond Time (2000); Rob Brown: Jumping Off the Page (2000); Spring Heel Jack: Treader (2001); The Nu Band: Live at the Bop Shop (2001); Steve Lehman: Structural Fire (2001); Alan Silva: ... & Sound Visions Orchestra (2001); Yuko Fujiyama Quartet Re-Entry (2001);  Yo La Tengo: Nuclear War (2002); Maneri Ensemble: Going to Church (2002); William Parker & the Little Huey Creative Music Orchestra: Raincoat in the River (2002); Steve Lehman Quintet: Camouflage (2002); David Furst:  Universary (2002)

Radio & television, films & documentaries:
Radio includes WKCR (Columbia University), most recently a five-hour birthday broadcast hosted by Ben Young, 9/02; Tufts University radio, WRBN,
KDHX-FM (St. Louis), WHFR (Detroit), WNYU (N.Y.University), WLIB, WBGO, and many more throughout the US and Europe.
TV includes ABC, CBS, CNN, NBC, WOR, WPIX (National Anthems Project); CBS, NBC, ABC (transit exhibition, Music Under New York big band with Wynton Marsalis and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra on Duke Ellington's 100th birthday celebration); "The Late Late Show" with Tom Snyder (New York subway performers, 4/28/95); Vision Festival 1997; also TV stations in Finland, Japan, and Portugal.
Films:  Rising Tones Cross ('84 Sound Unity Festival documentary); Street Musician; Why the Jazz Establishment Can't Stop Matt Shipp; Continuum

Soundtrack music:
Three films by Jamal Joseph:  The Selling of Harlem, Hughes' Dream
Harlem, Parole by Death; Ludwig, a play by Tay Maclaven. Survival in
New York by Rosa van Pranheim. History of American Indians in New York,
a PBS Channel 13 film documentary.

Unissued recordings, videos, and films:
Besides the ones already listed for you, there are at least 50 unreleased concert / performance videos and hundreds if not thousands of concert recordings all over the map. There are a few recordings pending release.  One is the Roy Campbell & Louie Belogenis quartet to be released by Boxholder Records around June 2003. There's a Whit Dickey quartet, another Yo La Tengo, the Khan Jamal quintet on CIMP, a Jose Castellar, an Atiba K. Wilson, a Charles Compo, a Rahda Boto Fasina, a Jason Finkelman, and another Matthew Shipp / Thirsty Ear pending release.

"Time Out" Eating and Drinking Guide 2000, Lenox Lounge photo, page 211;
"Visions 2001," "Let Your Compass Be Your Guide:  A Conversation with Roy
"New York Is Now" (French jazz magazine), Aug. 1997;
"Underground Harmonies" by Susie J. Tanenbam (music politics in the subways
of New York);
"Soundviews" #38, Jan. 1995, Roy Campbell interview;
"Manhattan File 1996," "Best Jazz for Free," Roy Campbell sextet, MTA;
"CMJ New Music Report," 6/23/97, Roy Campbell artist profile;
"Wire" Magazine," "Generation Ecstasy," Nov. 1999;
"Cadence," Dec. 1999, Roy Campbell interview;
"JazzTimes," May 2001, "Heresay" profile;
"Jazziz," Sept. 2001, "Free As the Wind Blows" by Phil Freeman;
"The Villager," music, Oct. 1993, "A Quiet Time in Holland Enlivened by Roy
Campbell" by Robert Hicks;
"The New York Times," Metro section, Oct. 11, 1995, "Say, Can You See An End
to This Job?" b7 James Barron;
"The New York Post," Aug. 1994, "Takin' It to the Streets";
"Downbeat" Magazine, Jan. 1996, "Oh, Say Can You See?";
"New York Newsday," April 30, 1999, "Fitting Tribute to the Duke";
"The New York Times," April 30, 1999, "Honoring the Duke";
"The New York Post," April 30, 1999, "In the Note of 'A'";

Internet profiles:

Contact information:
(718) 519-1513

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