Called "Canada's pre-eminent clarinettist and wind soloist by the Toronto Star, James Campbell has performed solo and chamber music concerts in 30 countries, has been soloist with over 60 orchestras, including the Boston Pops, the London Symphony, the Russian Philharmonic and the Montreal Symphony, and has performed Copland's Clarinet Concerto four times with Aaron Copland conducting.
He has appeared with over 30 string quartets, including the Amadeus (when he replaced an ailing Benny Goodman on a tour of California), Guarneri, Vermeer, New Zealand and St Lawrence Quartets. He has made 40 recordings, including the Debussy Rhapsody with Glenn Gould, the Philharmonia Orchestra of London, and the premiere recording of the Berio arrangement of the Brahms F minor Sonata with the London Symphony. His recording of the Brahms Clarinet Quintet was chosen by the BBC and London Times as the best available. More than 30 works have been written for him, including works by James Mac Millan (Scotland) Jacques Hétu (Canada), David Baker (USA), George Shearing (UK/USA), Wilhem Jetts (Holland), and Keiko Harada (Japan).
He has received a Juno Award, the Queens Jubilee Medal, was Canada's Artist of the Year, and was awarded Canada's highest honour, the Order of Canada.
James Campbell has been Professor of Music at Indiana University since 1988 and Artistic Director of the Festival of the Sound since 1985.