Friday, August 15, 2014

Red Wanting Blue at the Bowery Ballroom

Scott Terry
Originally from New Jersey, singer/songwriter Scott Terry formed Red Wanting Blue (also known as RWB) as a rock and roll band in 1995 with classmates at Ohio University in Athens. The band released two albums while still in school, and after college the band relocated in 1999 to Columbus, Ohio. Terry is the sole remaining original member of Red Wanting Blue; the band’s current lineup consists of Terry on vocals, ukulele and guitar, Mark McCullough on vocals and bass, Greg Rahm on guitar, Eric Hall on lap steel and guitar, and Dean Anshutz on the drums. Red Wanting Blue's 10th album, Little America, was released on July 1, 2014.

Red Wanting Blue brought the heart of middle America, complete with an on-stage display of on-the-road bumper stickers and truck-stop novelty items, to the Bowery Ballroom tonight. The music was similarly driving, with many lyrics painting the life of musicians who live on a tour bus. It was blue collar rock and roll with a taste of country and southern rock for flavor. Terry's husky, masculine voice delivered well, with all fervor and little nuance, lending a sense of depth and integrity to the sometimes oblique tales he spun in his reflective lyrics. He told the audience that he was afraid to sing the new song "Leaving New York" in New York, but took off his hat and sang the soft ballad earnestly and beautifully. Throughout the set, the energetic musicians played tightly and enthusiastically; although the feel of the music was loose, in reality there was little wiggle room for jamming until the end of the set. Opening act and long-time friends The Alternate Routes joined Red Wanting Blue on stage for the show's finale, a rousing seven-minute southern-rocking cover of Oasis' "Champagne Supernova," complete with dueling guitars. This was the sound of a young, working class America.

Red Wanting Blue will perform at Irving Plaza on November 20. In the meantime, visit Red Wanting Blue at www.redwantingblue.com.