Raq Star Interview with Cam

Where were you born?

In the desert oasis of Dauphin, Manitoba, Canada.

Describe yourself in 3 words.

Human in process.

What is your favorite song, movie, book, dessert?

Song:  that changes like the wind, but I am partial to some old "Chicago" tunes that feature their famous horn section.  Also anything by Michel Colombier.

Movie:  Wings of Desire by Wim Wenders and  ET.

Book:  I have favorite authors like Margaret Atwood and John Irving, but I constantly re-read all the music books in my collection to keep inspired.

Dessert:  Very partial to chocolate anything!

What's your favorite iPod app?

I'm too "old school!"  I have an iTouch that I just use for music listening and connecting to the web.  I don't want to be "hooked" on any apps.  I was into some for awhile, but that only made the time fly by very unproductively and wore my battery time down.  Sorry, but no developers getting rich off of me.... I'd rather buy music.

How long have you been playing music?

Trombone since 12, but singing in church choirs since 6 or 7.

What is your first inspiring music experience?

Lying under the piano while my mother played when I was very young.

What was your most embarrassing moment in performance?

I was called in to sight-read a pops concert with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra for a sick trombone player. It was a "Viennese Waltz" night, which is easy for me to play without any rehearsal. But, when it came to the rousing encore tune, nobody told me that we weren't going to play a "first ending," and that we  going straight to the "second ending" to make a short and sweet encore. After a couple of "solo notes," I realized that I was the only one playing.  If looks from a conductor could kill…

Who are your 3 favorite performing artists?

Trombonists Dave Taylor and Michael Brecker and Earth, Wind & Fire.

What inspires you to play music?

A feeling that I have 'something to say' and 'something to offer' combined with a love of collaborating with other artists. And I do love to see people dancing or else just having a great listening experience.

Why do you play Middle Eastern music?

I love this music that grooves, and also because it's "grounded in earthly-funkiness" while lending itself to improvisation. It's really very jazz-like!  It's some of the world's oldest type of music, and I love being part of it and discovering how I can add to the overall sound and experience.


“I want to inspire students and audiences to open their ears and hearts to our wide world of music!”

Originally from Canada, Cam has had a very diverse musical career. He has played trombone with the Calgary Philharmonic, Banff Opera, for CBC Jazz Radio Canada, spent an evening with the Count Basie Orchestra, and has played in bands for Doc Severinson, Bob Brookmeyer, Maria Schneider, in addition to leading many ensembles of his own performing original compositions. He teaches composition, sound design, and music appreciation at Shepherd University... striving to inspire students to open their ears and hearts to our wide world of music!

Check out Cam's website.



“Born in Aleppo, raised in Beirut, I began my musical career on the recorder, but soon made a transfer to the breathy sighs of the ney.  As a result, I have become addicted to the melodies and rhythms of the Orient, which transport me to a place far away and long ago, yet remain as close to me as my own heart.”