Rob Russell will be playing a solo, acoustic show at the Down Home in Johnson City on Saturday, Aug. 20th at 9 pm.
While Rob has fronted the Sore Losers on and off for most of the past eleven years, playing solo – especially at the Down Home – is an even deeper part of his past.
“The first time I played music in Johnson City was solo, just myself and an acoustic guitar at an Open Hoot at the Down Home when I was eighteen,” Russell explains. “I was so nervous. But I made so many friends, long-time friends from that first time on stage.”
At the club that night were Brian Relleva, of Brian & the Nightmares, and Robert Alfonso, who became Russell’s songwriting partner for many years.
“What I went on to learn from those two, from Brian in terms of showmanship and Robert in terms of language, changed my music and the course of my life in so many ways.”
It’s language that will take the forefront as Russell will take the stage for the first time in a long time without the Sore Losers.
“I love having the band around me, that power and the confidence it brings. But playing solo really makes you focus on the words and the phrasing of the songs, digging a little deeper.”
Saturday’s show will feature a core of half a dozen new songs, along with favorites from the band’s two CDs and songs that pre-date the Sore Losers.
“I’ve been posting lyrics and some demos of the new songs to our website, robrussellmusic.com, but this will be the first time that some of these songs have been played for a live audience.”
Doors open at 6 pm; music will begin at 9 pm. There will be a $10 cover charge. The Down Home is located at 300 W. Main St. in Johnson City, TN. Call 929-9822 or go to their website (www.downhome.com) for more information.