Welcome to my page here at Soundclick. I'm a guitarist and composer, jazz mostly but I do wander into some more eclectic things on occasion. Been retired from State of Illinois since 2014. Currently working with the group Ocean State, and booking my own trio/quartet things on occasion. Also working on a variety of recording projects from my 'home studio'. It's all good.
The Sam Crain Quartet has existed since 1976 or so, in the days of the old Crows Mill School. Just like now, we played standards and originals. Saxophonist GG Pelletier was in this original group and is in the present one. Bassist was Jim "Tooter" Troxell(now residing in Florida and known as Jim Troxell)and we had various drummers. Keith Cronin was one of my favorites. For more info on Keith, go to my site at http://www.samcrain.com/ and go to Links.
Around '81 or so we all kinda went out own ways. Nothing personal, but I'd played so many gigs with Messrs Troxell and Pelletier, I needed a break myself. They went off to play R & B(A Flock of Tooters, The Groove Daddies, etc)and I stayed playing jazz, more fusion-type stuff. The Sam Crain Quartet was on hiatus.
I revived the group in 1998, with Amy Smith on vocals, Jeff Rogers on bass and "Dr"Bob McEntyre on drums. We were working pretty steadily at the various clubs around town, doing mostly standards. Amy would do her vocal set and then we'd just play trio. Kind of a nice arrangement.
GG Pelletier was hanging around and sitting in with us(fresh from HIS long stint with the Groove Daddies and R & B)and ended up replacing Amy as our 4th member. Jeff Rogers, himself really a classical guitarist, left to go back to school(Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore MD, my alma mater as well)and was replaced by Kevin Ellis. Don Cochran became our new drummer.
So,from 1999 to 2006, the group has been GG Pelletier on tenor saxophone & vocals, Kevin Ellis on bass and Don Cochran on drums.
In 2006, a new group was formed, with Bill Schlipf on bass and Don Cochran continuing on drums. This trio would continue until Bill's passing in 2013. The Sambillanddon Ensemble, as I was fond of calling it, was probably the best band I ever had. It was "our" band, not just mine..
Bill was replaced by Tom Fatten, who played in the group until I dissolved it in 2016 or so. Don had had enough, so it was a good time to dis-band.
At the moment, I don't have a steady group of my own, but have good people to call when I get jobs under my name. 2019 is going to be the year to revive The Sam Crain Trio, if I have anything to say about it. Thanks for visiting. Stay tuned!
Yes, I play live gigs. Mainly within an hour or two of home(Springfield, IL): Decatur, Bloomington, Peoria, places like that. I have played 'OTR' in the past, may do it again at some point, who knows?
Frank Zappa, Bill Evans, Gerry Mulligan, Julian "Cannonball" Adderly, Jim Hall, Joshua Breakstone, Jesse Van Ruller, Emily Remler, Eric Clapton, Johnny Winter, Jeff Beck, Kenny Burell, Bela Bartok, Elliott Carter, Mario Davidovksy- and many more!
My main guitar for years has been a B. Cook archtop, modelled after a Gibson Super 400. I also have a Fender Telecaster I've gotten a lot of playing out of. Lately I've taken to 335s, and have a Gretsch and Epiphone in that body style. Boss Kitana amp with 1- 12". And that's it. Pretty no frills, right?