Cal Lampley

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Cal Lampley
Birth name Calvin Douglas Lampley
Born (1924-03-04)March 4, 1924
Dunn, North Carolina
Died July 6, 2006(2006-07-06) (aged 82)
Genres Jazz music classical music
Occupation(s) composer, producer, music critic, teacher
Labels Prestige, Columbia, Warner Bros.
Associated acts Miles Davis and many others

Cal Lampley (March 4, 1924 – July 6, 2006) was an American composer and record producer. He was the second child of Hettie Marina and William Lorenzo Lampley, and had a brother named William Elwood. He graduated with a B.S. from North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University in Greensboro, North Carolina. His first known music contribution was as an organist of the Chapel Hill Presbyterian Church, the University of North Carolina's on-campus church. There he formed a group that was later going to be the first all-black, 45-piece band in the then white-only Navy. It was called the "US Navy B-1 Band." Lampley himself served two and a half years in the Army Infantry.[1] Lampley moved to New York City in 1946 to continue his education at the Juilliard School Of Music.[2] With an Artist Diploma in 1949 in piano after three years under the direction of piano teacher Irwin Freundlich and composer Richard Franko Goldman, Lampley debuted his performance as a pianist at the Carnegie Hall concert in 1953. He won a job as a tape editor at Columbia Records. During his 9-year stint with Columbia, he rose to the position of Recording Director of the Popular Albums Department.[1] He was later hired by record producer George Avakian, which would later become his assistant, to work as an A&R and as a record producer for music labels such as Columbia, Warner Bros., RCA/Victor, and Prestige. He worked with artists including Miles Davis, Mahalia Jackson, Dave Brubeck, Art Blakey, Leonard Bernstein, Freddie McCoy and Louis Armstrong.[3] Other collaborations were with classical, jazz and pop greats such as Nina Simone, Robert Cassadesus, Zino Francescatti, Guiomar Novaes, Johnny Mathis, Genevieve, Victor Borge, Carmel Quinn, Arthur Godfrey, Tab Hunter, Bill Haley, Lonnie Sattin, and Chico Hamilton.[1] His own version of the composition "Misty" by jazz musician Richard "Groove" Holmes was Prestige's Records biggest single in its entire history; it peaked at number 44 on the Billboard charts in 1966.[4] In tribute to his musical contribution to the city and the state, Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke officially promulgated the "Cal Lampley Day" on May 1, 1994 in Baltimore at a City Hall ceremony.[5] On July 6, 2006 Lampley died at the Baltimore Washington Medical Center in Baltimore from complications of Multiple Sclerosis.


  1. ^ a b c LP, Forbidden Fruit, ColPix CP 419
  2. ^ Gladu, Martin (December 31, 2008). "Odd Man Out: Uncovering The Life Of Cal Lampley". All About Jazz. Retrieved 2011-06-22. 
  3. ^ "Cal Lampley". All About Jazz. Retrieved 2011-06-24. 
  4. ^ " -> Richard "Groove" Holmes -> Charts & Awards". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 2011-06-24. 
  5. ^ Jacques Kelly (July 8, 2006). "Cal Lampley, 82, producer of records, music educator". The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved 2011-06-25.