For the last twelve years Larry Kimpel has been one of the most in demand bassists and vocalists in Los Angeles. The spirit and energy in his playing has helped propel many of the world’s top artists to gold and platinum sales in all genres of music from rock to country and everything in between.
Now Larry steps out front with a hot new Smooth Jazz CD entitled "No more waiting" on his own independent label (O.F.E. Music). It’s the next logical step in a stellar career that has spanned more than 20 years. The songs are a mixture of eight original compositions and smooth remakes of the classics "Summer Breeze" and "People make the world go round".
From start to finish the CD showcases Larry’s powerful vocals and signature playing. And all while the musical influences therein are merged into one complete and pleasing listening experience.
Because of his love for all types of music, Larry has shared his talents with many artists during his career to this point.
Alanis Morrisette, Whitney Houston, Babyface, Stevie Wonder, Boney James, James Ingram, Al Jarreau, Larry Carlton, Yolanda Adams, Oleta Adams, Donnie McClurkin, Mary J. Blidge, Patti LaBelle, George Duke, Dianne Reeves, Steve Perry, George Benson, Branford Marsalis, Tom Scott, David Sanborn, Natalie Cole, Stanley Clarke, Michael Bolton, Jonathan Butler, Vanessa Williams, Jeffery Osborne, Peobo Bryson, Roberta Flack, Anita Baker, Ray Parker Jr., Lou Rawls and the list continues on!
Larry Kimpel, The Music Minister
Through Larry’s many musical accomplishments, one common thread has run through them all, his faith in God and his Savior Jesus Christ. "I could not have done what I’ve have so far in my life without my faith in a power much higher than myself." "I am nothing without the Lord!"
Larry’s call to music ministry led him to Dr. Robert H. Schuller’s Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove California where he has been a Ministering Elder and Worship Leader for the past five years. In addition to Larry’s entry into the Smooth Jazz Arena, he also has a powerful Inspirational CD entitled "Be still and know" also on (O.F.E.Music).
It is an album of eleven original songs written mostly from Larry’s own life experiences. "All that I have been through in my walk of faith through this life is represented on this CD and I’m very proud of it!" The music was performed and co-produced by Larry and Singer/Songwriter Monty Seward who wrote the Gospel Hit "Say Amen" for R&B Singer Howard Hewitt. Monty, his wife Kimiya Seward (formerly of the group Hiroshima) and Larry performed the powerful background vocals.
The music for "Be still and know" was finished in an astonishing six weeks and all the vocals were done in a marathon recording session that lasted three days! "During the final vocal sessions we were in a zone and we just couldn’t let go of the spiritual energy that had developed." That spiritual energy is evident on every track. But let’s take a quick look back at just how Larry got started on his wonderful duel musical journey.
Born Lawrence Martin Kimpel to Helen Williams and Allen David Kimpel on Oct. 11th 1959, Larry grew up in the Chatham neighborhood on the South Side of Chicago and discovered his love for music at a very early age. Larry’s father was a construction worker by day and an aspiring club singer at night. Even though his dad suffered from stage fright he had a smooth vocal delivery in the style of Nat King Cole and Arthur Prysock. When his Dad would come home from work, he would sing to Larry until he went to sleep. It was here that the seed was planted for the career that was to come.
Larry’s Father had always dreamt of traveling to L.A. to make it "Big"! However, his stage fright was too overpowering for him to go any further than the Chicago club scene and unfortunately he never realized his dream. But Larry took up his Father’s torch and he’s never looked back!
At just five years old Larry started playing the piano. He quickly began picking out the melody to Ramsey Lewis' version of "Wade in the water" soon after hearing it play on his sisters’ radio in her room.
By age nine Larry realized that he had inherited his father’s voice and began singing in his church’s youth choir. At twelve Larry took up the bass guitar as his instrument of choice and by his Sophomore year he was playing for his High School Music Directors’ Big Band "George Hunter and the Moonlighters" making $65.00 a night.
During that same time Larry was also a regular performer at Chicago’s Orchestra Hall as a member of the prestigious All-City High School Chorus.
At age 17 he was playing bass on sessions at Universal Recording for The Staple singers, Gene Chandler, Jerry "The Ice Man" Butler and the voice behind James Bond’s "Goldfinger" Theme, Miss Shirley Bassey. He even did a summer tour as the bassist with the "Free Street Theatre" of Chicago under the direction of Modern Dance Pioneer Mr. Patrick Henry.
Larry’s leap from the Chicago music scene to the world stage came in 1989 in the form of a long distance phone call from Anita Baker’s manager Sherwin Bash. Six months earlier Larry had the good fortune to meet Miss Baker at a concert that he was playing in Detroit with Anita’s former musical director, Pianist Bobby Lyle.
Bobby introduced Larry to Anita after his set and the two hit it off! So when Anita began planning her 1990 "Compositions" World Concert Tour, she had only one name in mind for her bass player and that name was Larry Kimpel. He left such a favorable impression on everyone involved that he was beckoned to make the move to L.A. which he quickly did and four years later he was asked back for Anita’s 1995 Tour.
From that wonderful association Larry was introduced to none other than Premier Keyboardist / Producer George Duke. "My very first session in Los Angeles was with George, Paul Jackson Jr. and Ndugu Chancelor!" "I said to myself, I made it!" "I’m living my Father’s dream!" From that day forward Larry has been at the top of Los Angeles’ "A" list of players and he’s still riding high. With the release of both his CD’s and his own creative vision in place, Larry Kimpel’s star is rising fast and there’s no stopping him!