CD Baby & positiveSOUL productions presents Al Campos.
Al Campos was born & raised in Highland Park, Los Angeles, CA.,
He is a singer, trombonist, multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, arranger, producer and educator.
Al is also the founder and owner of his own company, positiveSOUL productions, an independent label, music & life education developer, booking & management & global cultural exchange program.
Al grew up in what he calls the "last era of great American music." It was during this last era of great artists, the 1960's & 70's when he was listening to and learning from artists such as Little Stevie Wonder, The Jackson 5, Marvin Gaye, Smokie Robinson & The Miracles, The Temptations and many others.
During the 1970's, many successful bands with horns were making a an impact not only on the music industry but personally in Al's own life. Inspiring him were groups like James Brown, Tower of Power, Chicago, War, Average White Band, Kool & The Gang, The Commodores, Blood, Sweat & Tears, Earth Wind & Fire and many other groups.
Jazz groups such as The Crusaders, Al Jarreau, Wes Montgomery, J.J. Johnson, Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Weather Report, and again, countless others, all were making huge impacts on his musical taste, curiosity and possibilities.
Al began playing drums at age 8 years old. A Christmas gift from his mother, the drum-set was more of a toy set, not very serious at all but that did not stop Al from being very serious about playing them. Later, at Luther Burbank Jr. High School, at age 11 he started the 7th grade and his first music classes with Mr. William Court as his first "teacher."
Al started to play tenor saxophone in the classroom, learning to read music, playing in a section, became first chair and already training himself to play well and with good expression and feeling and sound.
In the 8th grade a new student from New York arrived at the Jr. high school. He was very talented and Al could hear quite easily how musical this new young kid was. He took over the first chair in the tenor sax section, pushing Al to the 2nd chair. Instead of playing 2nd chair in the tenor sax section, Mr. Court asked Al if he would play the baritone saxophone because there was nobody to play it and he needed that baritone bottom in the classroom. So, Al began playing baritone sax for the first part of the year.
That was when Al decided to ask Mr. Court if he could learn how to play trumpet instead. "Nope! too many trumpet players. But we do need more trombone players!" Al was not real crazy about playing that strange instrument with the slide, the slide trombone. But he took the instrument home anyway to try it out. For the rest of the year, in the 8th grade Al would play baritone sax in class and then take the trombone home to practice to see if he liked it. By the 9th grade Al was a full time slide trombone player, already looking very much forward to graduating jr. high school so he could play in the famous marching band at Benjamin Franklin Panthers marching band, also in Highland Park.
He did in fact play trombone in 1975-76 Franklin Panthers marching band, followed by a move to Eagle Rock high school where he played in the famous Jazz band directed by teacher, John Rinaldo back in 1976-77.
But underlying all of these influences was Gospel music. These are the roots of Al's music & soul. Everything he does stems from and is built upon the foundation of Gospel music. His mother, Adela Campos Barnes sang in a group called, "The Messengers" back in the 1950's & 60's. As a matter of fact, Al can still remember his very first memory as a one year old baby! He can still remember a rehearsal room with the piano player playing and his mother and the other singers, singing and working on music.
Above & beyond all of these life changing musical inspirations, the most important figure of them all was and still is to this day, his pseudo uncle, mentor, friend and pastor, Mr. Andraé Crouch.
In 1964, Al's mother, Adela recorded an album with "The Messengers." The album was called, "The Galilean Calls." It featured a very young Andraé Crouch, recording his first session as an organ player and from that day forward was the beginning of a life long relationship between Adela, her young son, Al Campos & Andraé.
It is amazing how those very first impressions were the actual building blocks in his life as he would himself become a singer & musician.