Royce Campbell

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Royce Campbell
Birth name Royce Greer
Born June 7, 1952 (1952-06-07) (age 62)
Seymour, Indiana, United States
Genres Jazz
Occupation(s) Musician, composer, record producer
Instruments Guitar
Years active 1971 – present
Website Official website
Notable instruments
Gibson L-5, Benedetto Fratello

Royce Campbell is a jazz guitarist primarily associated with mainstream jazz, but also has released smooth jazz and post bop jazz recordings.

Royce Campbell was born in Seymour, Indiana, in 1952. The son of a career navy man, Campbell grew up in various cities around the U.S. and abroad, including Asia, Europe, and the West Indies. Exposure to various musical genres while a child contributed to Campbell's musical style and approach in jazz composition and playing. A love for rock and roll marked Campbell's first connection with the guitar, at the age of nine, when he discovered Chuck Berry. Like many guitarists of his generation, Campbell was also influenced by Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton.[1]

By the time Royce finished high school in the early 1970s, he was certain he wanted to pursue a professional career in music. His uncle, Carroll DeCamp, an arranger/pianist who arranged for Stan Kenton and Les Elgart, invited Royce to live with him and study in Indiana, providing most of Royce's musical education in theory and composition, and by age 21, Campbell had begun touring with R&B artist Marvin Gaye and developing his talents for stage performance. In 1975, Royce was hired by a local music contractor to do three concerts with award-winning film composer Henry Mancini in Indianapolis. Soon after Royce became the touring guitarist with Henry Mancini's orchestra, holding that positing until Mancini's death in 1994.[2]

While appearing on recordings as a sideman, and a couple as leader, during the early years of his career, Campbell started recording and touring more on his own during the 1990s, focusing at first on mainstream or straight-ahead jazz. Although he cites Wes Montgomery as his main influence, the influence of horn players such as Dexter Gordon and Chet Baker are evident in Royce's melodic style. In 1993, he produced Project G-5: A Tribute to Wes Montgomery which also featured guitarists Tal Farlow, Jimmy Raney, Herb Ellis and Cal Collins. His 1994 album 6x6 featured guitarists Pat Martino, John Abercrombie, Larry Coryell, Dave Stryker and Bucky Pizzarelli. With Project G-5: A Tribute to Joe Pass, in 1999, he combined the talents of Charlie Byrd, Gene Bertoncini, Mundell Lowe, and John Pisano.

During his career Royce Campbell has released more than 30 CDs as leader or co-leader among various sideman projects. Fifteen of these CDs have made it onto the US national jazz radio charts. Campbell's soloing is documented among other jazz guitarists of the era, in Mel Bay's Anthology of Jazz Guitar Solos: Featuring Solos by the World's Finest Jazz Guitarists! [3]

In November 2010, Royce Campbell was inducted into the Indianapolis Jazz Foundation Hall of Fame.

Discography[edit]

Headline Recordings

Year Title Label
1983 Solo Guitar RedBud Records
1987 Around the Town Raised Eyebrow Records
1990 Nighttime Daydreams Timeless Records
1993 Elegy to a Friend Raised Eyebrow Records
1993 Vista Sin-Drome Records
1994 A Tribute To Wes Montgomery Evidence Music
1994 Vista – WTPI 10th Anniversary Jazz Sampler WTPI
1994 6x6 Paddle Wheel Records
1994 Gentle Breeze Timeless Records
1995 Make Me Rainbows Positive Music
1995 A Tribute to Henry Mancini Tuxedo Music Ltd
1998 Pitapat A-Records
1999 Hands Across The Water String Jazz Recordings
1999 A Tribute to Joe Pass King Record Co.
1999 Royce Campbell with Strings Chase Music
1999 Remembering Wes Savant Records
1999 Stella By Starlight. Jazz After Midnight. St. Clair Entertainment Group
2000 "Prelude to a Kiss" – Jazz Guitarists Who's Who: The Art of Solo Guitar King Record Co.
2002 Trioing Jardis Records
2003 A Tribute to Charlie Byrd Jardis Records
2006 Trio By Starlight Philology Jazz Records
2007 Get Happy Foxhaven Records
2008 Roses & Wine Philology Jazz Records
2009 All Standards...and A Blues Philology Jazz Records
2009 Movie Songs Project (with Phil Woods) Philology Jazz Records
2010 What is This Thing Called? Philology Jazz Records
2004 Six by Six: A Jazz Guitar Celebration Moon Cycle Records
2004 A Jazz Guitar Christmas Moon Cycle Records
2005 Plays for Lovers Moon Cycle Records
2006 Elegy to a Friend Moon Cycle Records
2006 Gypsy Soul Moon Cycle Records
2007 A Solo Guitar Christmas Moon Cycle Records
2008 The Art of Chord Solo Guitar Moon Cycle Records
2008 A Jazz Guitar Christmas: Volume 2 Moon Cycle Records
2009 Solo Wes: A Solo Guitar Tribute to Wes Montgomery Moon Cycle Records
2009 Solo Mancini: A Solo Guitar Tribute to Henry Mancini Moon Cycle Records
2010 Solo Trane: A Solo Guitar Tribute to John Coltrane Moon Cycle Records
2010 Triologue: Concepts Moon Cycle Records
2011 Jazz Blues Moon Cycle Records
2012 The Beginning Moon Cycle Records

References[edit]

  1. ^ Heidt, John. "Royce Campbell." Vintage Guitar. July (2005): 26.
  2. ^ Alexander, Charles. Masters of Jazz Guitar: The Story of the Players and Their Music. London, UK: Balafon Books, 1999, 185.
  3. ^ Mel Bay's Anthology of Jazz Guitar Solos: Featuring Solos by the World's Finest Jazz Guitarists! Pacific, MO: Mel Bay Publications, 2000.

Additional sources[edit]

  • Benedetto, Robert. Making an Archtop Guitar. Anaheim Hills, CA: Centerstream Publishing, 1994. xiii.
  • Cook, Richard, and Brian Morton. The Penguin Guide to Jazz, 9th Ed. New York, NY: The Penguin Group, 2008. 221, 1209.
  • Esposito, Russell R. The Golden Milestone,4th Ed. New York, NY: The New York Learning Library, 2007. 320.
  • Ingram, Adrian. Mel Bay Concise History of the Electric Guitar. Pacific, MO: Mel Bay Publications, 2006. 106.
  • Ingram, Adrian. The Gibson L5. Anaheim Hills, CA: Centerstream Publishing, 1997. 7, 68, 74.
  • Larkin, Colin, ed. Encyclopedia of Popular Music, 4th Ed. USA: Oxford U P, 2006.
  • Leonard, Hal, Corp. All Music Guide to Jazz: The Definitive Guide to Jazz, 4th Ed. San Francisco, CA: Backstreet Publishing, 2002. 1063.
  • Ellis, Andy. "A Tribute to Wes Montgomery." Guitar Player 29.2 (Feb 1995): 146.
  • Resnicoff, Matt. "Project G-5: A Tribute to Wes Montgomery." Guitar Player 29.6 (June 1995): 29–30.
  • Boyd, Herb. "CD Reviews –A Tribute to Henry Mancini." Down Beat 63.6 (June 1996): 45.
  • Ellis, Andy. "Hands Across the Water." Guitar Player 32.12 (Dec 1998): 139.
  • Koransky, Jason. "Project Shopping." Down Beat 66.6 (June 1999): 53.
  • Levy, Adam. "Royce Campbell." Guitar Player 33.12 (Dec 1999): 41.
  • Smith, Will. "Six By Six—A Jazz Guitar Celebration." Down Beat 72.7 (July 2005): 76.
  • Ephland, John. "Rudy Linka-Royce Campbell." Down Beat 74.3 (March 2007): 71.
  • Koert, Hans. "The Five Guitars." IAJRC Journal 40.4 (Dec 2007): 71–72.
  • Ephland, John. "Traveling Guitars." Down Beat 76.2 (Feb 2009): 71.

External links[edit]