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Jon Camp of Renaissance -any other oldtimers recall him?

Discussion in 'Bassists [BG]' started by Hifiguy, May 12, 2011.

  1. Hifiguy


    Jul 9, 2008
    Maybe the most classic Ric tone of all the Brit prog players. Excellent sense of both melody and pace. He was one of my early inspirations on bass guitar, with Squire and Bruce.

    Nice guy, too. I struck up a conversation with him back in '76 when they played a club here in Mpls. We chatted bass for a bit and he told me they'd be back in a few months at a theatre and if I was there to swing by and he'd introduce me to the rest of the band. He was as good as his word and I met and talked with everyone but the keyboard player, who never talked to the public. :confused: And brother, was Annie Haslam (the singer) gorgeous back in the day! She could sing a little, too. :)

    He seemed to disappear off the face of the earth after Renaissance slowly fell apart in the early '80s.
    Rocker949 likes this.
  2. SpasticFingers


    Mar 2, 2010
    His solo on Ashes Are Burning on their Live At Carnegie Hall album sounds so similar to Chris Squire's Fish, and he even dressed the part by wearing a cape the way Squire did at the time. If he's been obscured by time its because he didn't carve enough of a tone for himself, even if the music of the band (him included) was beautiful.
  3. RickC

    RickC Gold Supporting Member

    Jun 9, 2005
    Yeah, I remember Jon and Renaissance. Great player, great band. Very classic Rickenbacker tone. We opened for them in '74 and I got to hang with the band as well (even the keyboard player :)). I dug up the early discs awhile back and was reminded how much I loved them.


    ps true confessions time - I swiped a pack of used Rotosounds from Jon's case backstage, for a souvenir. Sorry about that Jon :bag:
  4. Hoover

    Hoover Inactive

    Nov 2, 2007
    New York City
    I recall an interview where Jon admitted that he was conciously trying to emulate Chris Squire*. But he was definitely one of my faves as a kid, a big influence on my early bass playing. I saw Renaissance at the Felt Forum in 1975, awesome show. And he's definitely a poster boy for the best sounds you can get out of a Rickenbacker.

    I've seen some more recent performances on YouTube, and, um, well let's just say Jon's skills haven't quite kept up with the times.

    *edit: I found that interview here http://www.nlightsweb.com/lib/reviews/camp97.htm
    Q - Your bass playing has always been melodic and exciting. Who were your influences and how do you think you came to develop this style of playing?
    A - In one word Chris Squire. What happened was that I had just got married and believe it or not on our honeymoon we happened to drop into a pub where Yes were playing. I saw Chris and I thought, "Wow!"

    Q - You were one of the pioneers of the Rickenbacker Bass sound. What drew you to using this particular bass guitar?

    A - Well we go back to Chris Squire. He was the man. I just saw that guitar and heard the sound.
    woodyng2 likes this.
  5. TuckLM


    Apr 4, 2005
    I'm a big fan of his as well and have tried to find any news of him in recent years. Does anyone know what he's doing now?
  6. jerry

    jerry Too old for a hiptrip Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 1999
    Renaissance used to come through the NYC area quite a bit in the mid 70's, I've always dug them and Jon's playing. I break out their albums from time to time, takes me back to the days of WNEW FM.
  7. kesslari

    kesslari Groovin' with the Fusion Cats Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2007
    Santa Cruz Mtns, California
    Lark in the Morning Instructional Videos; Audix Microphones
    The first rock concert I went to was Renaissance opening for Yes in Philly, back in 1975 or so. They were touring in support of their "Scheherazade" album, which was a great album - that and "Fragile" were the first records I bought...
    Such a little prog-head I was back then :D
    Jeff Scott likes this.
  8. Although he freely admitted to emulating Chris Squire's sound, I always feel Jon Camp's tone was a better example of the Rick growl.

    My fave Jon Camp/Rennaissance moment has to be 'Midas Man', stunning bass line.
  9. I saw Jon during the last tour that Renaissance did with him, Annie and Michael around '84/5. After that, Annie was the sole survivor with an all new band. He played a black Dick Knight 4-string and watching him play "Can You Hear Me" brought me to tears. Of course "Ashes are Burning" was off the chain. Hope life is good for him.
  10. dls59

    dls59 Supporting Member

    Love Jon Camp's playing. I just listened to Ashes Are Burning a couple days ago.
    rickwebb likes this.
  11. slopeshoulder


    Nov 1, 2009
    Oh yeah.
    Loved him.
    Squire-lite, but great lines, great tones, nice harmony vocals, and personable stage banter.
  12. JxBass

    JxBass Supporting Member

    Aug 5, 2008
    I still listen to the live recording of Ocean Gypsy on a regular basis and have always enjoyed his tone and melodic playing. Thanks!
  13. Jon Camp

    Jon Camp

    Jun 18, 2008
    I'm still very active-in fact i'm doing a solo album at present!
    The whole Chris Squire think gets a bit silly-all I said was that I greatly admire him but that's not what was printed.
    I know Chris and think it's no mistake that if you played a Rick you'd either be classed as a Chris, Jon or Geddy sound alike.
    It's all about style and vision-not just the sound!
    For those of us who have been lucky enough to play in bands that allowed them to be an 'individual' on the bass it is not uncommon to be pigeon holed. It's worth listening to peoples individual performances-I don't think the trained ear would find that many similarities-Stay safe-Jon Camp
    B-Mac and 68Tele-Bass like this.
  14. Jon Camp

    Jon Camp

    Jun 18, 2008
    I've posted-i'm very active and thanks for your kind words-Jon
    B-Mac likes this.
  15. Roscoe East

    Roscoe East

    Aug 22, 2011
    Wow! Jon, you were one of my biggest influences when I was a wee teen in the 1970s, it's so great that you're here on TalkBass!

    Tell us more about the forthcoming solo album, please!
  16. Hello Jon Camp!!! Are you on Facebook? either way, all the best to you!
  17. Hi Jon! Thanks for all the wonderful music, and such glorious bass tone! :bassist:
  18. TinIndian

    TinIndian Supporting Member

    Jan 25, 2011
    Micco Florida
    I have several Renaissance albums. A little before my time but some friends from New York turned me on to them around 87' or so. Definately Ric tone to the max. Love your playing Jon. Great Stuff! Thanks for chiming in and best wishes to you!

    Loved Annie Haslam's vocals too! What a voice!
  19. dls59

    dls59 Supporting Member

    Jon-Freaking-Camp! Brother, you essentially taught me to play bass many years ago. (I probably should owe you some money for all the lessons. :D )

    I've worn out more Renaissance albums than I'd care to remember. I'm glad to hear that you're still playing and have some work coming out.

    Keep us informed.
  20. ptg


    Mar 16, 2008
    Hi Jon! I'm a big fan and have seen you more times than I can count!

    A quick question if I may: I know you're identified with the Ric sound (I always loved your playing but I'm not a big Ric guy.) but there are some cuts on Prologue that have a much warmer tone. Was that the Ric as well?

    Can't wait to hear your new material!
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