SongVault Artist Profile
Michigan, United States
Contemporary Blues / Electric Blues
DETROIT REGIONAL IBC CHAMPIONS 2007!
ABOUT RUSTY WRIGHT BLUES...
There will always be those who feel compelled to argue over what the blues is or isn't. If the music of Rusty Wright Blues sounds like it was colored from the big box of crayons, it's because Rusty Wright and Laurie LaCross-Wright feel the universe would be a mighty flat and boring place if everyone was given a crayon from the box and told they had to express themselves with just that one color.
The title track, "Ain't No Good Life", is easily the most traditional sounding on the disk and features Rusty's slide guitar skills but a wide variety of influences make an appearance on this Flint Michigan couple's debut release.
Tommy Stewart (a longtime friend of Rusty's who enjoyed success as original drummer for Godsmack) contributes wickedly deep pocket drum grooves on all of the tracks. Steve Himes, a band mate since 1999, plays keys. Recent additions to the band include drummer Dan Mata and bassist Randy McEntire.
These husband/wife guitarists manage to keep at least one toe lodged in the blues while embracing a southern rock vibe that might best be described as 'Bonnie Raitt and ZZ Top crashing an Allman Brothers house party.'
Taking a cue from husband/wife country music teams like Carter & Cash, Jones & Wynette and McGraw & Hill, the Wrights also bring the time-honored male/female duet tradition into the Blues world. Their affable banter and sense of humor pervades the disc and they sound like they're having a helluva good time as they trade verses back and forth on songs like "Something Missin" and "The Fool Will Do."
Their quirky sense of humor again shows up in "Nasty Reputation," "Ain't From Mississippi," "Toppy" and "Long Time Coming" - all hard grooving tunes with a southern blues rock vibe. Rusty tears up the fret board on "Hell On My Heels."
"Do It Again" may slip out of the genre of blues but Rusty and Laurie refuse to feel apologetic.
"Its a song about looking back and not regretting the decisions and circumstances that led you to where you stand today. Our over-30 crowd relates to it and it's a great song to be able to sing at this stage in our lives. said LaCross-Wright. "Plus, its a blast watching audiences bob their heads and sing along on the choruses."
Rusty and Laurie gleefully dubbed 2005 their "Dude! Where did you come from?" Tour after receiving gracious compliments from Lynyrd Skynyrd members when RWB opened for them in 2004.
Longtime fans aren't surprised. Rusty Wright's got the kind of guitar chops that make people stop and stare, spellbound. Wide eyed, people jostle for a better view of his hands and riotous facial expressions.
Wright's introduction to professional musicianship came at age 13 when he climbed aboard a tour bus and became the guitarist for a successful Southern Gospel recording act led by his mother. His diverse career as an in-demand touring guitarist, front man and composer has taken him to most points in the US and across Europe. A skilled movie and television composer, songwriter, audio engineer and session guitarist, Wright's compositions have also been picked up by ESPN and TNT.
Fronting the band with Wright is his wife, rhythm guitarist/vocalist Laurie LaCross-Wright, a compelling singer with a vivid and expressive vocal style that stretches with ease from a breathy, crooned endearment into a two-octave slide that becomes a throaty affirmation of her ability to wail. Touching people's emotions through a song is a rare ability, but this woman has the knack - often making the most stoic man in the room wipe at his eyes with her Bluesy rendition of "Summertime".
The chemistry between Wright and his wife is both obvious and refreshing as they exchange playful banter onstage and share anecdotes about the songs and their lives with the audience.
Musically, they soar. Their passion for music and performing is evident as they take turns playing off each other. Laurie laughs with delight when Rusty plays a particularly inventive riff. His guitar work echoes the dynamics and emotion of her voice as she sings. He closes his eyes and loses himself in the music as he plays. She, in turn, looks directly out at the audience, smiling widely from the stage, as if to say "You'd better believe this is every bit as fun as it looks!"