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Van Cephus / Bio

VAN CEPHUS IS AN ACCOMPLISHED MUSICIAN PERFORMING WITH ALL TYPES OF KEYBOARDS AND (INCLUDING A HAMMOND B3), ELECTRIC AND ACOUSTIC GUITARS, ELECTRIC BASS, AND DRUMS. HE ALSO SINGS LEAD AND BACKGROUND VOCALS. HIS BIGGEST INFLUENCE WAS AND IS MR. JAMES OSCAR "JIMMY" SMITH. IN JUNE 1964 AT AGE NINE; HE WAS ONE OF THE FIRST FEW AFRICAN-AMERICAN YOUNGSTERS WHO WERE INVITED TO PLAY IN THE ANNUAL MICHIGAN MUSIC FESTIVAL AT COBO ARENA. THE TV NEWS CAMERAS ZEROED IN ON HIM AND HIS PARTNER JOSEPH MARSHALL THE THIRD. THIS SEGMENT WAS PART OF THE EVENING NEWSCAST. VAN HAS BEEN A PROFESSIONAL MUSICIAN SINCE 1968. HE BECAME A MEMBER OF THE DETROIT FEDERATION OF MUSICIANS LOCAL 5 ON AUGUST 21st, 1969 AT THE AGE OF 14. HE STARTED HIS CAREER PLAYING HIS HAMMOND B-3 FOR DANCES GIVEN BY TEEN SOCIAL CLUBS SUCH AS THE DEL SPRITES, THE PRE OMEGAS, THE CO-ETTES AND THE SIGMA PHI. HIS HOME WAS OFTEN FILLED WITH OTHER YOUNG MUSICIANS SUCH AS RAY PARKER JR. AND EARL KLUGH. HE WAS A MEMBER OF CHAPTER 8 (ANITA BAKER AND PRODUCER MICHAEL POWELL), AND APPEARED ON THEIR FIRST LP. HE ALSO PLAYED HAMMOND B3 ON RANDY CRAWFORD'S RECORDING OF "KNOCKIN' ON HEAVENS DOOR" FEATURING ERIC CLAPTON. DAVID SANBORN, THE WINANS, AND THE CLARK SISTERS. THIS RECORDING WAS PRODUCED BY GRAMMY Winner MICHAEL J. POWELL AND CAN ALSO BE HEARD ON THE SOUNDTRACK OF THE FILM "LETHAL WEAPON 2". HE RECORDED 3 TUNES ON OLETA ADAMS CD "COME WALK WITH ME" (INCLUDING THE DUET "BEAMS OF HEAVEN"). On November 6th 2008, Van accompanied Anita Baker live in New York in a duet configuration. VAN PERFORMS IN A VARIETY OF MUSICAL STYLES AND GENRES, INCLUDING STRAIGHT-AHEAD JAZZ ("GIANT STEPS"), STANDARDS ("WHAT IS THIS THING CALLED LOVE"), R&B/FUNK ("MY EYES DON'T CRY"), BLUES, AND CONTEMPORARY AND TRADITIONAL GOSPEL. HE EVEN DOES AN EXCELLENT IMPRESSION OF SAMMY DAVIS JR.! (As The Samster himself would say “And I mean that”). VAN HAS ALSO PERFORMED WITH ARETHA FRANKLIN, THE DELLS, MARTHA AND THE VANDELLAS, Carl Carlton, Hamilton Bohannon, Ernie Rodgers, Marcus Belgrave, JOHNNY TRUDELL AND MANY OF DETROIT'S TOP SINGERS AND MUSICIANS AS A LEADER AND SIDEMAN. HE IS CURRENTLY PLAYING SINGLE ENGAGEMENTS (MUSIC FOR ALL OCCASIONS) IN THE GREATER METROPOLITAN DETROIT AREA. VAN HAS PLAYED ACOUSTIC PIANO, HAMMOND B3, SYNTHESIZER, AND PIPE ORGAN AT C.O.G.I.C, PENTECOSTAL, APOSTOLIC, UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST, BAPTIST, INTER-DENOMINATIONAL, NON-DENOMINATIONAL, AME AND FULL GOSPEL CHURCHES. VAN WELCOMES ALL OPPORTUNITIES TO PERFORM.

General Info

Band Members
Van Cephus
Artist Name
Van Cephus
Home Page
http://www.reverbnation.com/vancephus
Active Since
06/70
Genres
Jazz / Smooth Jazz

Contact Info

Location
Detroit, MI
Manager
Van Cephus