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Bruce Cockburn John Prine Ry Cooder

Genres You Will Love
Folk: Modern Folk Moods: Type: Acoustic Moods: Featuring Guitar Blues: Finger-Picked Guitar Folk: Fingerstyle

By Location
United States - California

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Born in Chicago, raised in Southern California, Cej took up the classical violin at age 6. At 11, he abandoned it for the guitar, teaching himself to play by listening to Woody Guthrie’s songs, as played by Rambling Jack Elliot and Cisco Houston initially, then by Woody himself (along with Cisco, Sonny Terry and Leadbelly). Cej wrote his first song, Let ‘em Be The Last, on the evening of Bobbie Kennedy’s assassination. It was included on his debut solo CD, Sleepwalker In Paradise, released decades later.

Seduced by the Paul Butterfield Blues Band, Cej picked up the electric guitar in his teens and, after a short run as a music major, he dropped out and joined a rock and roll band. Twelve years, three bands and three eponymous albums later (Sweet Pain on United Artists, 1970; Rock Rose on CBS Sony, 1979; and Small Talk on MCA, 1981), he became disillusioned with the music business and dropped out, again, this time to return to school.

Armed with a master’s degree in social work, he launched a new career in the mental health field. Soon thereafter, he and home town friend, Joel Rafael, started playing coffee houses together. This bloomed into the Joel Rafael Band, a ten-year run (1994-2004) and 5 CDs, including 2 collections of Woody Guthrie songs.

Post Joel Rafael Band, Cej began to work as a traveling mental health consultant. Based out of California, he lived and worked, for various lengths of time, throughout the US, in Europe, Asia and Africa…collecting experiences and writing songs along the way.

Cej’s first solo CD, Sleepwalker in Paradise, was inspired by a long work assignment in Hawaii. Released in 2013, it made the Folk-DJ Top Albums for 2014, with additional airplay on 75 AAA and Americana stations in the US, Canada, Europe, Australia and Israel.

His new CD, Clovis Man, was inspired by a long work assignment in Clovis, New Mexico. It was released in August 2018. There’s more to come!

FYI: "Cej" is pronounced "siege".