Back Alley Hoodoo is a fusion of kindred spirits, united by their love of the Blues. 2005 saw a series of collaborations by some good souls with great talent, but none seemed to really click. In the Spring of 2006, today's lineup came together to cut loose and jam in an anonymous garage, and the magic began to happen. At that moment, the band that was to become Back Alley Hoodoo was born. Three months later, Hoodoo made their Richmond debut at the RCBS Blues Challenge, where we didn't win, but we didn't suck either, so here we are, still playing, and still in love with the Blues. Hoodoo is focused on bringing a natural sound and old school style to Richmond's Blues scene. Delta, Texas, Chicago, and even West Coast Jump all played roles in the formative years of Hoodoo's members, and today they bring it all home with a vengeance. We're not the next Stevie Ray or Junior Wells, we're Back Alley Hoodoo and we're ready to serve you up a taste of Blues played our way. So grab your friends and come on out for a show. Together we'll have a fine time and leave you with your attitude "adjusted." Gordon Graham has been polishing his harp chops for over 25 years. He stole his first licks from Pigpen, and has since gone on to develop his own inimitable style. Influenced through the years by the likes of Little Walter, Rice Miller, Junior Wells, and George "Harmonica" Smith, his blues arsenal now has a life of its own. When not laying down some sweet harp, his vocals add a unique flavor to the Hoodoo stew, and his jazz tinged Guitar licks complement Jack's gritty sound. His most recent band ventures were Richmond's own Johnnie and the Lowdowns and the Rockabilly inspired duo, the infamous Blue Billies (who will one day ride again!). When not performing with Hoodoo, you can find him lending his vocal talent to the Virginians, a Richmond based Men's Chorus. Recently returned from the Augusta Heritage Center's Blues Camp where he studied with Joe Filisko, Gordon's continuing goal in life is both simple and inspiring - "I just want to play Blues with friends."
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Rusty and Laurie gleefully dubbed 2005 their "Dude! Where did you come from?" Tour after receiving gracious compliments from Lynyrd Skynyrd members when the band 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 in-demand 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!"
COMMENTS AND REVIEWS Oxford Hot Blues & BBQ Festival, June 2006 "The Rusty Wright Blues Band hit the stage running and had the people on their feet with songs from their close-to-being-released CD (Ain't No Good Life) to crowd favorites. Guitar wizard Rusty led the band through a series of songs and just to show the kids before them that they had chops too, finished with a red hot version of the Allman Brothers Whipping Post, which brought the entire crowd to it's feet for a standing ovation." – Tim Richards, Blues Photographer, writer
“The Rusty Wright Band is one of the finest Blues acts that you will ever see. From their first tune to their last, Rusty and Laurie will keep you captivated with in-your-face, hard-driving blues selections as well as their heart-wrenching mellow numbers. These guys are a definite "must see." – Steven J. Allen, Oxford Hot Blues & BBQ Festival Executive Producer & Detroit Blues Society Board Member
KALAMAZOO BLUES FESTIVAL, JULY 2005 "I saw you play today. Your time is about to start."Here are links you can put on your site for buying the CD "Ain't No Good Life". Rusty Wright's Website CDBABY |W|P|116018783761006120|W|P|Rusty Wright Blues- Do it again - personal interview|W|P|