April 27, 2012
An Evening with Tom Rush
In March, Tom celebrated his 50th year of “doing whatever it is that he does” with a huge show at Passim. He is a gifted musician and performer whose shows offer a musical celebration . . . a journey into the tradition and spectrum of what music has been, can be, and will become. His distinctive guitar style, wry humor and warm, expressive voice have made him both a legend and a lure to audiences around the world.
Come join us as we welcome Tom Rush back to our stage. His shows are filled with the rib-aching laughter of terrific story-telling, the sweet melancholy of ballads and the passion of gritty blues. Get your tickets ahead of time, as this show already has a huge advance sale.
Emerging from the early Sixties Boston/Cambridge folk scene as a folk-blues singer and guitarist, Tom Rush helped link folk to rock with his 1966 Elektra album, Take a Little Walk with Me, which included a side of electric cover versions of songs by Bo Diddley, Buddy Holly and Chuck Berry, as well as Tom’s first self-penned song, “On the Road Again.” His next album, 1968’s The Circle Game, was singled out by Rolling Stone as the record that ushered in the singer-songwriter era with its debut of songs by Mitchell, Browne and Taylor before they had released any albums themselves. The album also featured what has become Tom’s best known song, “No Regrets,” which has been a hit for seemingly everyone (including Emmylou Harris and The Walker Brothers) except Tom; even U2 dropped in a few lines from the song in a televised 1994 Grammy Awards performance. Subsequent albums for Elektra and Columbia became showcases for other deserving songs by the likes of Bruce Cockburn, Guy Clark, Eric Kaz, and Richard Dean.
Tom Rush has been touring steadily for five decades, bringing that voice and those songs to devoted audiences across the country. There have been a few live albums as welcome reminders of Tom’s relaxed, expressive baritone, skilled guitar-playing, droll humor and infallible taste in writing and choosing great material. A live CD, Trolling for Owls, released in 2003 and published by Tom’s Nighlight Recordings, captures Tom’s complete performance and includes, for the first time, some of the spoken stories that have endeared him to audiences.“How I Play (some of) My Favorite Songs”, a DVD, was released in 2005 by Homespun Tapes. It shows how he plays ten of the memorable songs and guitar arrangements that have long made him one of America’s most beloved performers. In 2009, Tom recorded his first studio CD in 35 years. Recorded in Nashville, What I Know was produced by Tom’s long-time friend Jim Rooney and includes original Tom Rush material, as well as harmonies by Emmylou Harris, Bonnie Bramlett and Nanci Griffith.
Today, Tom Rush still lives in New England. His voice has grown even richer and more melodic with training, and his music, like a fine wine, has matured and ripened in the blending of traditional and modern influences. He’s doing what he loves, and what audiences love him for: writing and playing . . . passionately, tenderly . . . knitting together the musical traditions and talents of our times.
- Tom Rush was not only one of my early heroes, but also one of my main influences. James Taylor
- He is, if anything, better than he was in the Seventies and Eighties. He relates to his audience as if he were playing for friends. Key West—The Newspaper
- Superb . . . perhaps his greatest talent is his ability to turn whatever concert space he’s occupying into a cozy living room. He seemed utterly ageless. The Albany Times Union
- Tom Rush roams — wild and free — a vast musical territory. He is very good. Washington Post