August 19, 2002 The Campbell Brothers To Perform at the Library of Congress
Press Contact: Craig D’Ooge (202) 707-9189
Public Contact: (202) 707-5510
The American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress will present Grammy-winning Gospel sacred steel musicians, the Campbell Brothers with Katie Jackson, on Wednesday, August 28, at noon on the Neptune Plaza of the Jefferson Building, First and Independence Avenue, S.E., Washington, D.C. The event is free and open to the public. In case of rain, the concert will be held in the Mumford Room, on the sixth floor of the James Madison Building of the Library of Congress. The Jefferson and Madison Buildings are located close to Metro stops at Capitol South (orange and blue lines) and Union Station (red line).
The outdoor concert is the sixth in the center’s new series “Homegrown 2002: The Music of America”—monthly presentations of traditional music and dance, April to November, drawn from communities across the United States and arranged with the help of state folklorists. Cosponsoring the concerts are the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage and the Folklore Society of Greater Washington. The American Folklife Center’s “Homegrown” series is part of “I Hear America Singing,” a Library of Congress project celebrating America’s music.
The Campbell Brothers and Katie Jackson bring a new twist to classic African American gospel music: the moaning, growling, wailing, and shouting sound of the electric steel guitar played with Pentecostal passion. They are all members of the House of God Church, where the steel guitar has been an important part of spirited and celebratory worship services for more than six decades.
The Campbell Brothers were among the first groups from the House of God Church to tour extensively. They are a family band from Rochester, New York, where patriarch Charles E. Campbell serves as pastor in nearby Rush and as New York State Bishop. In the early 1970s, while just a teenager, Chuck Campbell was one of the first in the House of God to take advantage of the expanded musical potential of the complex pedal-steel guitar. Today, he remains a very strong influence on aspiring younger musicians. His brother, Darick, chose to stay with the eight-string lap-steel. In addition to trading of leads with Chuck, Darick often plays walking bass lines on his steel–a technique rather common in the House of God but seldom seen elsewhere. Phil Campbell deftly handles rhythm and lead guitar parts. He seems to have an endless supply of funky shuffles and rhythm figures. Phil's son, Carlton, provides the band’s rhythmic foundation with his energetic, infectious drumming. Powerhouse vocalist Katie Jackson, of Baltimore, is one of the most venerated singers in the House of God. A passionate performer with an incredible range of expression, she never fails to lift the spirits of a congregation or a concert audience.
Future concerts for the “Homegrown 2002” series include:
Mingo Saldivar–2002 NEA National Heritage Fellow
Santiago Jiminez, Jr.
Old New England–Contra dancing
Pinetop Perkins with the Bob Margolin Band
Cellicion Family–Traditional Zuni music and dance
The American Folklife Center was created by Congress in 1976 and placed at the Library of Congress to “preserve and present American folklife” through programs of research, documentation, archival presentation, reference service, live performance, exhibition, public programs, and training. The Center includes the Archive of Folk Culture, which was established in 1928 and is now one of the largest collections of ethnographic material from the United States and around the world.
Part of the Kennedy Center’s Performing Arts for Everyone initiative, the Millennium Stage helps fulfill the center’s mission to make performing arts widely accessible. The Millennium Stage introduces the performing arts to the local community and to millions of people who visit the center each year. These free, 6 p.m. performances are offered 365 days a year. Tickets are never required. Daily broadcasts of Millennium Stage concerts are available on the Internet. For a schedule and information on how to access the broadcasts, visit the Kennedy Center website: http://kennedy-center.org.