Who are the String Musicians in Clockwork Angels?
The eight classical musicians that conductor David Campbell brought together to provide string backup on Rush’s Clockwork Angels album and tour are all accomplished artists, several of whom have extensive session experience with popular rock and pop acts. Campbell, the conductor, is a Canadian-American who has worked on some 450 gold or platinum albums, including Metallica’s Death Magnetic, Kiss’s Alive IV, and Bon Jovi’s These Days. He’s also the father of Beck, the rock artist (born Bek David Campbell).
One of the violinists, Audrey Solomon, is from Alaska and has worked with Britney Spears, Mary Blige, and Peter Cetera of Chicago. As it happens, she was Miss Alaska in 2000 and won the talent award at the Miss America pageant that year.
Viola player Jonathan Dinklage (left) and Violinist Entcho Todorov (right) play together in the The Lumiere String Quartet, which has put out both wedding and divorce (!) music on the Lumiere label. Dinklage and Todorov are both accomplished musicians and have played extensively with other artists. Todorov is a Bulgaria native who now works mainly in the United States. He’s done work with a number of popular acts, including Sheryl Crow, Hall & Oates, Mary Blige, Elton John, Andrea Bocelli, and Rod Stewart. Dinklage is the brother of actor Peter Dinklage and most recently played on Beasts of the Summer Wild.
One of the two cellists, Adele Stein, is from Salina, Kans., and played with Bruno Mars when he performed on the Grammys and on the Ellen Degeneres show, and at one time played with Sting in a promotional video.
The other cellist, Jacob Szekely, is the artistc director of the String Project in L.A. His focus is on incorporating a jazz/funk style into his cello playing and has an extensive list of credits with other artists, including Mary Blige and Jay Z, and he plays with several of his own groups, incluing Supernova, a jazz/fusion quartet. Read the Rush Vault post on Szekely’s new album.
Violinist Joel Derouin is the concert master for the Rush ensemble and has worked with dozens of artists, including Paul McCartney, Madonna, Elton John, Black Eyed Peas, Beyonce, Lyle Lovett, Barbra Streisand, Tony Bennett, Sheryl Crow, Robert Plant, Jimmy Page, Daughtry, and Eric Clapton. He wrote the score to the 1991 movie “The Hitman,” with Chuck Norris, and the track “Jane,” on Stevie Nicks’ 1994 Street Angel album. His work appears in the scores of dozens of moves, TV shows, and broadway plays, and he’s toured with a number of live acts, including Sheryl Crow’s 2006 Wildflower tour and Eric Clapton’s 1998 The Pilgrim tour. He was musical director for Stevie Nicks’ 1992 tour. Read the Rush Vault interview with Joel.
Gerry Hilera, another violinist, has played with dozens of popular artists, including Sheryl Crow, George Benson, Linkin Park, Patti LaBelle, Ray Charles, Jimmy Demers, Mana, and Incubus.
Alex said that David Campbell won’t be touring with the ensemble once the early kinks are worked out. All nine of the musicians appeared to be on stage for the early shows.
Thanks to a head’s up from Rush is a Band, we learned that a few of the musicians appeared on Kim Mitchell’s show on Toronto’s Q107 Oct. 15. Here’s a 2-minute video of the playing on the show:
Here are a few pictures from the Manchester, N.H., and Bristow, Va., shows.—Rob Freedman, Rush Vault