In Memoriam Humphrey Campbell (1958-2024)

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With deep sorrow, we have learned of the passing of Humphrey Campbell on the 25th of March. Humphrey was a vocalist, producer, composer, and arranger, and served as the principal subject teacher for Voice in the jazz department at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam.

Born on the 26th of February 1958 in Moengo,Suriname, Humphrey graduated with honours from the Hilversum Conservatorium, marking the beginning of a rich and diverse career. He collaborated with numerous prominent figures in the Dutch music scene, including performing Seth Gaaikema’s version of "For Once In My Life" during Gaaikema’s New Year’s Eve show in 1984. Additionally, he participated in the Knokke Festival in 1985 alongside Karin Bloemen and Astrid Marz. Humphrey was a regular vocalist with the Dutch Jazz Orchestra and featured with orchestras such as The Skymasters, the Metropole Orkest, the BRT Orkest, WDR Big Band, Köln Big Band, and the VARA Dansorkest.

As a guest musician, he contributed to albums by artists such as Jerry van Rooyen, Rob de Nijs, Paul de Leeuw, Greetje Kauffeld, Rocq-e Harrell, Peter Koelewijn, Anita Meijer, Helmut Lotti, Ruth Jacott, and Henk Westbroek. He also played a leading role in the musical "A Night At The Cotton Club."

In 1991, he released his self-produced and predominantly self-written album "NO Questions." A year later, he, along with his brothers Ben and Carlo, achieved ninth place in the Eurovision Song Contest with the song "Wijs Me De Weg." With Carlo and his other brother Charles, he formed the band CC Campbell, for which he also served as a composer, arranger, and producer. Later in his career, he focused more on producing, composing, and arranging for artists such as Ruth Jacott, Paul de Leeuw, Henk Westbroek, Rob de Nijs, Judith, and Timeless.

Humphrey was an enormously versatile and passionate musician. As a teacher, he imparted his knowledge and experience to new generations of vocalists with great enthusiasm. We are grateful to Humphrey for everything he has meant to our institution. His warm and inspiring personality will be greatly missed.

We extend our deepest condolences to all those mourning this profound loss.