Here's a great concept, especially for guitar lovers. Guitarist Royce Campbell loads up his ten track instrumental jazz offering with duets with some of the most influential guitarists out there. Six By Six features Campbell trading lines with Pat Martino, Bucky Pizzarelli, John Abercrombie, Larry Coryell, and up and comer Dave Stryker. The LA Daily News and numerous other newspapers have called it the "jazz guitar CD of the year" - and with good reason. The opening track "Happy Blues" (with Coryell) kicks off the proceedings in a high energy fashion, while "Milestones" (with Martino) uses a model style harmony to allow for a rousing showcase of single line talent, as Martino and Campbell 'trade fours'. Another highlight is the samba style chosen for the Stryker/Campbell duet on the standard "Softly As In a Morning Sunrise". Three Campbell originals, and great track notes in the package only add to the enjoyment of this historical release.
Born in Indiana, Royce took up guitar in 1961 at the age of nine, and started playing professional gigs eight years later. He spent the seventies performing and touring with Henry Mancini and Marvin Gaye, which led to his first album "Solo Guitar", in 1983. Then a prolific recording period began in 1987, as Royce put out seven albums on various labels between 1987 and 1994 - among them, "Project G-5, A Tribute To Wes Montgomery" (1992) and the Japanese release of "Six By Six" in 1994. The late nineties and beyond meant the release of several more albums, including "Project G-5, A Tribute to Joe Pass" and "Make Me Rainbows". In 2000, Royce joined the Smithsonian Jazz Masterworks Orchestra, and in 2001 played with the legendary Quincy Jones.
Campbell was featured on the cover of the two main jazz guitar magazines String Jazz and Just Jazz Guitar. He was also featured in profiles in Jazz Times, Down Beat, Guitar Player Magazine, 21st Century Guitar, Japan's Swing Journal and Germany's Akustik Gitarre. It is apparent that more and more people are becoming aware of Campbell's talents as a world class jazz guitar master.
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