Businessperson Entrepreneur Musician
1 January 1959
Paul Andrew Campbell (born 1959) is a British entrepreneur and musician. He is the founder of amazing, the digital media brand, and CEO of Amazing Media, operator of amazingtunes.com and Amazing Radio.
Table of Contents
EducationEarly careerAmazingMusical experienceAwards and honoursPersonal life and other activities
Campbell was born in north-east England and educated at RGS Newcastle and New College, Oxford, where he read English Literature.
Campbell started his media career as a BBC General Trainee in 1980. He became a Producer of File on 4, the BBC Radio 4 current affairs programme, in 1982. After producing BBC Television programmes such as Russell Harty and Brass Tacks, he left the BBC to freelance as a TV Producer with Diverse Production and then Zenith Productions in 1987.
In 1989 he founded Bell Television, a London-based television production company which made programmes for Sky Television and Channel 4. Bell diversified into radio, commercials, corporate films and new media, building its first website for The Barbican Centre in 1992. It was an early adopter of desktop digital production techniques to deliver content across multiple platforms.
During the dot-com bubble Bell focused entirely on new media, working for clients such as Granada Television, Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan and UBS Warburg from offices in Carnaby Street, London and New York. In 2002 Campbell re-located to north-east England and co-founded Liberty Bell Productions (the TV company which produces Grumpy Old Men for the BBC) with former ITV CEO Stuart Prebble and The Tube creator Andrea Wonfor. In 2003 he founded ‘amazing’.
amazing started life as an educational software company, producer of the study website Amazing Grades and other online products for 14–19-year-old students. Amazing Grades was designed to speed the process of using the internet for students, combining web search results with expert input from teachers at leading British schools in both the private and state-maintained sector.
In 2005, looking for ways to extend the amazing brand, Campbell conceived the idea of amazingtunes.com while reading a biography of Steve Jobs. The concept combined his digital media and music experience and was designed to re-shape the music industry with an ethical business model which rewarded musicians fairly for their work. ‘amazingtunes.com’ launched as a beta website in 2006. In 2007 it was spun off as a separate company, The Amazing Media Group. In 2009 Amazing Radio launched, a national digital station broadcasting 100% new music drawn from amazingtunes.com. In 2010 it launched Amazing Instore, delivering new music to shops and business premises, and The Amazing Chart, an unsigned chart published weekly by the European music industry journal Music Week.
Campbell has performed as a freelance professional musician for most of his life, playing timpani, percussion and drums. He started studying aged 9, gave his professional debut aged 11 and by age 21 had played in The Royal Albert Hall, Royal Festival Hall, The Marquee Club and BBC Maida Vale Studios. He now freelances part-time as a timpanist with Northern Sinfonia and other professional orchestras and plays jazz and rock drums for pleasure. He also plays the piano.
Awards and honours
Campbell has an MA from Oxford University, is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and in 2011 was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Business Administration by Sunderland University.
He won the Broadcasting Press Guild Award for ‘outstanding radio programme’ in 1984 for File on 4 and has other creative awards in a variety of electronic media, including three New York Film Festival Awards and a Communication Achievement Award for ‘Excellence in the Use of Video’.
Personal life and other activities
Campbell is a member of the British Association of Snowsport Instructors, having taught skiing in the European Alps before his marriage. He is a Governor of Royal Grammar School, Newcastle, a Governor of Sunderland University
and a founder member and Director of The Entrepreneurs’ Forum, a networking association for British entrepreneurs.