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Farewell: ‘Tonight Show’ Drummer Teddy Campbell Marks ‘Sad
Ending’ of 4-Year Run
“This has been the greatest 22 years of my life,” said an emotional Jay Leno, 63, as he relinquished the reins
of the “Tonight” show, passing them on to his younger successor Jimmy Fallon who takes over Feb. 17.
But the big-chinned host is not the only one bidding the audience farewell. Percussionist Teddy Campbell,
husband of Mary Mary’s Tina Campbell, is a part of the forced exit from his comfy position as the lead drummer
in the Tonight show band.
“Its been 22 years for jay and 4 years for me. What a blessing & honor to be apart of history,” Campbell
FEBRUARY 7, 2014
Article By Meredith Holloway: EEW Magazine Entertainment News
The gifted percussionist, who has recently made more headlines for his scandalous adulterous affair with a
family friend than his talent, began playing professionally at age 14.
In a 2005 interview with Modern Drummer Magazine he said, “As soon as I got home from school, I didn’t even
do my homework. I just got on the drums and played until my mom came home from work. I had about three
hours a day to practice, blazing away to Dave Weckl, Vinnie Colaiuta, and Will Kennedy with the Yellowjackets.”
After finishing high school, he began touring and received opportunities to play with everyone from Gerald
Levert, Keith Sweat and Johnny Gill, to Christina Aguilera and Rickey Minor.
Minor was instrumental in shaping Campbell’s career, opening up opportunities for him to put together bands
for Deborah Cox, Kelly Price, Mary Mary, Britney Spears, and many others—too many to name here.
But now, the “Tonight” chapter, which is simply one among many, is closed.
“What a night with my girl! Great Party!” he said of the send-off festivities, attaching a photo of him and his wife,
adding, “Sad Ending though.”
Professional percussionist Teddy Campbell dresses as Jay Leno for Halloween and
tweets "The things i do for my job! #BlackJayLeno" (Credit: Twitter)