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This is a pirated album, released in Spain: - page 3 / 6





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had played with Charlie Parker and the pianists were all 30 years older than me and knew so much about music. And here I was this nerdy college kid with.a classical background and all I had going for me was my ear and a feel.” Rodby grew up in Joliet, Illinois. His father was a choir director and composer. By the age of 10, Steve would play bass (by ear) while his father played guitar. He studied classical bass with Warren Benfield of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and jazz under the tutelage of Rufus Reid, all this while attending Northwestern University. Shortly after graduating, Rodby received a call from his friend guitarist Pat Metheny, who he had met at a band camp in his youth. Metheny was searching.for a new. bassist and Rodby was hired during his first audition. He has since pl9-yed on all of the Pat Metheny Group albums from 1980 on, co-produced a number of the band’s albums, and won 10 Grammy Awards with the group. Apart from Metheny, he has recorded with Monty Alexander, Ramsey Lewis, Simon & Bard, Paul McCandless, Chuck Mangione, Fareed Haque, and Lyle Mays, among others. He has also toured with Tony Bennett and Joe Henderson. Rodby is 55-years old at this writing and is musically active in numerous capacities. In his own words, “I hope to make music forever. Teaching, playing, producing ... music’s what I’m all about!’ In Steve Rodby’s earlier quote discussing his big break in becoming the house bassist for the Jazz Showcase, he was probably talking about Wilbur Campbell when he stated, lithe drummer in the house band had played with Charlie Parker!’ Campbell was the most frequently used drummer at the Jazz Showcase, which received regular visits from the likes of Charlie Parker, Art Blakey, Miles Davis, Sonny Stitt, and J.J. Johnson among others. The drummer was also old friends with Jazz Showcase owner Joe Segal, dating back to Segal’s earliest days booking bands at Roosevelt University. Campbell was also widely requested by visiting musicians who had either worked with him before or heard of his skills through the musicians’ grapevine. “When Wilbur Campbell would play the drums, he would fill up his solos like somebody was packing a suitcase with as much as he could ... He was one of the great drummers of the world, even though a lot of people didn’t know it!’

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    Jack DeJohnette

Campbell came up through the legendary program of

Captain Walter Dyett at DuSable high School on Chicago’s south side. (Dyett also taught Gene Ammons, Eddie Harris, Von Freeman and Dorothy Donegan!) In addition to being one of the great unheralded drummers in jazz, Wilbur also doubled on vibes and was occasionally used as an emergency pianist. He brought his skills on these other instruments to his drumming, making him one of the most melodic drummers in the idiom (hence DeJohnette’s appreciation for him). His debut recording was for a 1955 Chicago date with pianist Andrew Hill (which also featured Pat Patrick on baritone sax, Von Freeman and bassist Malachi Favors Maghostut). His next recordings were for bassist Wilbur Ware’s October 16, 1957 session that would be issued on the album The Chicago Sound (which also featured Johnny Griffin on tenor sax and Junior Mance on piano). He would then record three albums with trumpeter Ira Sullivan: Nicky’s Tune, Blue Stroll and Bird Lives! During the ‘70s and ‘80s he would record with Gene Ammons and Dexter Gordon, Howard McGhee, John Klemmer, Kenny Dorham, Muhal Richard Abrams, Sonny Stitt, E. Parker McDougal, Von Freeman, Clifford Jordan, Pete and Conte Candoli, and Willie Pickens. During the final years of his life Campbell would work as the drummer of Von Freeman’s quartet which also included Jodie Christian on piano and Eddie de Haas on bass (the group recorded the albums Never Let Me Go, Lester Leaps In, Dedicated to You and Silvering - the latter with Louis Smith on trumpet). Campbell’s final recordings were for an August 1 2, 1993 Chicago date with tenor saxophonists Eric Alexander and Lin Halliday that would be issued on the album Stablemates. Wilbur Campbell passed away at the age of 73 on December 30, 1999. One of the reasons that Campbell would never gain national prominence was that he never toured, preferring to play around the Chicago area, while maintaining a day job as a substance abuse counselor. Although Pepper had never performed with any of these sidemen before, it is quite likely that the rhythm section were all working together regularly as the house band at the Jazz Showcase during this period. Unfortunately, this concert would mark their only known recording together. In fact, the only musicians that would record together apart from this performance were Pickens and Campbell. They recorded together for the first time at a 1974 quartet date in Chicago under the leadership of tenor saxophonist E. Parker McDougal. They would record again for McDougal in 1 980 for his album Blues Tour. Pickens and Campbell’s last known collaboration were for the pianist’s aforementioned 1987 debut album It’s About Time! Despite Pepper’s unfamiliarity with the band, the group’s chemistry was excellent. Much like the band that would be recorded at the Village Vanguard two weeks later, this group sounds as if it had been performing together for years, with truly inspired playing from The concert was broadcast over the radio, and Pepper was interviewed by the radio presenter mere moments before taking the stage. However, as the music is clearly

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