Curtis Darby grew up in Philadelphia where he began to learn his skills by playing percussion and singing in church. His parents were gospel singers and his whole family was busy with music. At the tender age of 9 years old, Curtis entered a talent contest with his brother and some friends. To their surprise the audience threw money and it was clear who was the winner. This was the point in his life where his journey to become a musician was realized.
At the age of 14 he played in a well-known band as a percussionist for about 7 years. Being a 70-ties band, there was more than one percussionist. And the band had a secret meeting to fire him. They came to the conclusion they had one to many percussionists. In order to fit in, he borrowed an old trumpet from his brother and began practicing. Within a year’s time, people were defining Curtis as a trumpet player. To get even, he left the band. He became a jazz-musician, playing trumpet.
While in Los Angeles, working in a major music studio, Curtis received a phone call from his father, stating: “You still need to go to college.” After a few more phone calls he left Los Angeles and returned to Philadelphia to study Psychology and Voice at Cheyney University.
After finishing university, he went back to Los Angeles, knocked on the doors, but nobody was home. He had been gone a little too long. Soon after that he was offered a record contract in Europe, packed his bags, caught a plane and found himself in The Netherlands. It was a small independent record company, but at the time it was exactly what he wanted. He gathered some musicians, found a very good studio in Amsterdam and laid down 13 original funky tracks. After bringing the music back to the record company, he was informed that they had very little money for promotion. Curtis made arrangements with the company to acquire the money they were going to use for promotion. He took some courses in video, editing and camera and made his own video clips. The record company was amazed.
Later he was signed to a publishing company based in London and in Germany and wrote music for other artists.
He has played with several famous artists (like George Benson, Winton Marsalis, George Duke, Hans and Candy Dulfer, Marcus Miller and a lot of European artists) and performed on different festivals in Europe. Curtis made his own video clips and wrote and arranged his own music that's put on different CD's.
For a year now he has been back in the United States. What he spoke of is that he was surprised to hear that somewhere melody has fallen asleep, and most songs only have a beat. That was his motivation to write again. At this point Curtis has finished 14 new original songs for a new CD and he is writing every day. His purpose for the CD is to display his ability to write several styles of music. And also with hope to start touring again and that some major artists will find it interesting to record some of his music (CD2007)
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from a friend
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Vocalist, Percussion, Trumpet, Other
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Jaijai, what a wonderful mission you've undertaken to create such a place for artistic minds to meet and share their hearts. A place to renew faded determinations, and revive lessened momentums. A place to display our wares and reconfirm to one another that we actually are on the right track.
I commend you, Jaijai, for caring so much that you created this castle of the heart for all of us. I want to share my praise for all of the new friends as well as old friends that I've met and will meet here in our castle. Here we can garnish the where-with-all, the strength, the conviction, and the selflessness through our symbiosis, to share our gift to the world with an unbiased agenda.
My mentor, Daisaku Ikeda says of art: "A beautiful flower delights and refreshes the hearts of all people equally, no matter what soil it grows in. That is the power of beauty. The same is true of great art. It is this spirit that the German poet Heinrich Heine sang of when he wrote that once the peapod bursts open, the sugar peas inside are for everyone to enjoy."