Eddie C. Campbell
Born: May 6, 1939, Duncan, Mississippi
Photo credit: Marilyn Stringer
Guitarist Eddie C Campbell moved to Chicago, Illinois, when he was ten years old, and by age 12 had already jammed with Muddy Waters, and learned firsthand from Waters, Magic Sam and Otis Rush In his early years as a professional musician, Campbell played as a sideman with Howlin’ Wolf, Little Walter, Little Johnny Taylor, and Jimmy Reed. The versatile performer was one of the most flamboyant and popular musicians on the West Side scene, riding around on a purple motorcycle, sporting a red Jazzmaster guitar, learning karate and winning sixteen knockouts as an amateur boxer. By the late 50’s, Campbell’s band was backing up Percy Mayfield, Lowell Fulson, Tyrone Davis, and Little Johnny Taylor, and Eddie C. was performing with Little Walter, Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf, Otis Rush, and Mighty Joe Young. It was also during this period that he became close friends and running buddies with Magic Sam, who lived two doors down and was to prove influential on Campbell’s music. In 1976, Willie Dixon hired him to play in the Chicago Blues All-Stars. Campbell’s debut album, King of the Jungle was released the following year, with accompaniment from Carey Bell (harmonica) and Lafayette Leake (piano) His later recordings were enhanced by a discipline not always evident in his life. In 1984, Campbell left Chicago for Europe, settling initially in the Netherlands. He worked there for a decade before returning to Chicago in the 1990s.Campbell’s latest album is Spider Eating Preacher.