Roy Campbell Jr.

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Roy Campbell Jr.
Roy Campbell.jpg
Photo by Bogdan Dimitriu
Background information
Birth name Roy Sinclair Campbell Jr.
Born (1952-09-29)September 29, 1952
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Died January 9, 2014(2014-01-09) (aged 61)
The Bronx, New York
Genres Free jazz, funk, R&B
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Trumpet
Associated acts Yusef Lateef, Woody Shaw, Jemeel Moondoc, Ellen Christi, Cecil Taylor, David Murray, Matthew Shipp, Billy Bang, Carlos Garnett, William Parker,

Roy Sinclair Campbell Jr. (September 29, 1952 – January 9, 2014) was an American trumpeter frequently linked to free jazz, although he also performed rhythm and blues and funk during his career.


Born in Los Angeles, California, in 1952,[1] Campbell was raised in New York City. At the age of fifteen he began learning to play trumpet and soon studied at the Jazz Mobile program along with Kenny Dorham, Lee Morgan and Joe Newman.[2] Throughout the 1960s, still unacquainted with the avant-garde movement, Campbell performed in the big bands of the Manhattan Community College. From the 1970s onwards he performed primarily within the context of free jazz, spending some of this period studying with Yusef Lateef.[3]

In the early 1990s Campbell moved to the Netherlands and performed regularly with Klaas Hekman and Don Cherry.[2] In addition to leading his own groups, he performed with Yo La Tengo, William Parker, Peter Brotzmann, Matthew Shipp, and other improvisors. Upon returning to the United States he began leading his group Other Dimensions In Music and also formed the Pyramid Trio, a pianoless trio formed with William Parker.[2] He performed regularly as part of the Festival of New Trumpet Music, which is held annually in New York City.[citation needed]

He died in January 2014 of hypertensive atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease at the age of 61.[4][5]


As leader[edit]

As co-leader[edit]

with Other Dimensions in Music

with The Nu Band (Roy Campbell Jr., Mark Whitecage, Joe Fonda, Lou Grassi)

  • Live at the Bop Shop (Clean Feed, 2001)
  • Live (Konnex, 2005)
  • The Dope and the Ghost (Not Two, 2007)
  • Lower East Side Blues (Porter, 2009)
  • Live in Paris (No Business, 2010)
  • Relentlessness Live at the Sunset (Marge, 2011)

with Joe McPhee, William Parker & Warren Smith

As sideman[edit]

with Jemeel Moondoc
with Saheb Sarbib
  • Live at the Public Theatre (Cadence, 1981)
  • Aisha (Cadence, 1981)
with Billy Bang
with William Parker
with Ehran Elisha
  • Sweet Empathy (Cadence, 1995)
  • The Kicker (CIMP, 1998)
  • Lowe Down Suite (CIMP, 1999)
with Peter Brötzmann's Die Like a Dog Quartet
  • From Valley to Valley (Eremite, 1998)
with Matthew Shipp
with Rob Brown
with Alan Silva
  • & The Sounds Visions Orchestra (Eremite, 2001)
with Yuko Fujiyama
  • Re-entry (CIMP, 2001)
with Steve Lehman
  • Structural Fire (CIMP, 2001)
  • Camouflage (CIMP, 2002)
with Peter Brötzmann Tentet + 2
  • Short Visit to Nowhere (Okkadisk, 2002)
  • Broken English (Okkadisk, 2002)
with Maneri Ensemble
  • Going to Church (Aum Fidelity, 2002)
with Khan Jamal
  • Balafon Dance (CIMP, 2002)
with Kevin Norton
  • The Dream Catcher (CIMP, 2003)
with Yo La Tengo
with Exuberance
  • The Other Shore (Boxholder, 2003)
  • Live at Vision Festival (Ayler, 2004)
with Steve Swell
with Burton Greene
  • Isms Out (CIMP, 2004)
with Dennis Gonzalez
  • Nile River Suite (Daagnim, 2004)
with El-P
with Whit Dickey
with Marc Ribot
with Charles Tyler
  • Live at Sweet Basil vol. 1 & 2 (1984) (Bleu Regard, 2006)
with Garrison Fewell
  • Variable Density Sound Orchestra (Creative Nation Music, 2009)
with Stone Quartet
  • Live at Vision Festival (Ayler, 2011)
with William Hooker Trio with Dave Soldier
  • Heart of the Sun (Engine Records, 2013)
with New Atlantis Octet
  • Unto the Sun (Not Two. 2013)
with Adam Lane
  • Blue Spirit Band (CIMP, 2013)
  • Oh Freedom (CIMP, 2013)


  1. ^ Roy Campbell Jr. – Biography (2002) Archived December 24, 2010, at WebCite
  2. ^ a b c Yanow, Scott (2000). Trumpet Kings: The Players who Shaped the Sound of Jazz Trumpet. Miller Freeman Books. pp. 85–86. ISBN 978-0-87930-600-7. Archived from the original on December 24, 2010. 
  3. ^ Cook, Richard; Morton, Brian (2002). The Penguin Guide to Jazz on CD. Penguin. p. 243. ISBN 978-0-14-051521-3. Archived from the original on December 24, 2010. 
  4. ^
  5. ^ Bynum, Taylor Ho. "Postscript: Roy Campbell Jr". The New Yorker. Retrieved 2014-01-11. 

External links[edit]