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SOULFUL IMPRESSIONS | profile | all galleries >> BOBBY RUSH tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

BOBBY RUSH

IMAGES OF BOBBY RUSH BY KURT SWANSON AND SOULFULIMPRESSIONS
E-MAIL: kurtswanson@juno.com

RUSH LATEST RELEASE "RAW"
Thursday, 16 August 2007


Listen to Bobby Rush in a live performance on Woodsong Old Time Radio this Monday October 8, 2007 at 6:p.m. CST.

Soul-blues superstar Bobby Rush built his reputation via elaborate and sexy stage shows, but on his new CD, Raw, he returns to his roots. The 13 tracks find Rush mostly alone with his guitar and harmonica on a set largely consisting of originals.


Since the early ‘50s Rush has worked out of Chicago and more recently Jackson, Mississippi, but he started playing blues back in tiny Homer, Louisiana, where his father was a preacher. As a young man Rush played across the Deep South in bands whose music was just removed from acoustic country blues, while his current style of “folk funk” is notable for its downhome sensibilities.


On Raw Rush lays bare the basic approach he’s honed over the last fifty-plus years, in the process revealing the extent to which his modern repertoire builds upon traditional song themes and structures.


Fans of Rush are aware of his skills on the harmonica, but will be pleasantly surprised to hear his work on the guitar throughout the record, which is assisted on three tracks by Rush’s former bandmember Shawn Kellerman on dobro.


Rush plays off of themes originated by Muddy Waters and Sonny Boy Williamson II, but most of the songs here are his own compositions. Some, including I Got 3 Problems and 9 Below Zero, are in same vein as Rush’s modern songs that address that battles between the sexes, and he makes a rare venture into political commentary with How Long, which addresses the unfulfilled promise of 40 acres and a mule. Other songs go back to his childhood, including Uncle Esau, which Rush performed as a funk workout on his album Folk Funk.


Although Rush has performed in a wide variety of contexts over his 50-plus year career he's only recently debuted as a solo performer.


"A lot of people don't know this side of me,” says Rush. “It was a little bit hard when I started doing it because people expect the same kind of output from me as when I’m with the girls. The more I do it now, though, the more I learn how to do it." ~bobbyrush.net

2005 CHI-TOWN BLUES FESTIVAL
2007 CHICAGO BLUES FESTIVAL

Bobby Rush Website: http://www.bobbyrush.net
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