Rush is credited with shaping the folk music revival of the 1960s and the musical genre’s renaissance in the 1980s and 1990s.
BANGOR — Gifted musician and performer Tom Rush will bring his distinctive folk music, guitar style, wry humor and warm, expressive voice to Husson University’s Gracie Theatre on Friday, March 24 at 7:30 p.m.
“Over the many decades Tom has shared his musical gifts with audiences, he has become a folk music legend,” said Jeri Misler, managing artistic director of the Gracie Theatre. “The sweet melancholy of his ballads and the passion of his gritty blues touch audiences on a deep emotional level. Between songs, his terrific stories bring rib-aching laughter. This concert will be sure to entertain folk music lovers of all ages.”
Rush’s impact on the American music scene has been profound. He helped shape the folk revival in the ’60s and the renaissance of the ’80s and ’90s. His music has left its stamp on generations of artists.
James Taylor told Rolling Stone, “Tom was not only one of my early heroes, but also one of my main influences.” Country music star Garth Brooks has credited Rush with being one of his top five musical influences. Rush has long championed emerging artists. His early recordings introduced the world to the work of Joni Mitchell, Jackson Browne and James Taylor.
Beginning his musical career in the early ’60s, Rush used to play at Boston-area clubs while he was a Harvard student. By the time he graduated, he had released two albums. Signed by Elektra in 1965, Rush made three albums for them, culminating in “The Circle Game,” which, according to Rolling Stone, ushered in the singer/songwriter era.
In the early ’70s, folk music turned to folk-rock, and Rush, ever adaptable, saw more room to expand his musical horizons. Recording now for Columbia, he toured tirelessly with a five-man band, playing concerts across the country. Endless promotional tours, interviews, television appearances, and recording sessions added up to five very successful but exhausting years, after which Tom decided to take a break and “recharge” his creative side at his New Hampshire farm.
Rush returned with a splash in 1981, selling out Boston’s prestigious Symphony Hall in advance. Time off had not only rekindled Rush’s love of music, it had re-ignited music audiences’ love of his music. Crafting concerts that combined well known artists such as Bonnie Raitt or Emmylou Harris with then unknowns like Alison Krauss or Mark O’ Connor, Rush took the show on the road. From the ’80s to the present day, these performances have filled the nation’s finest concert halls to rave reviews, and have been broadcast as national specials on PBS and NPR.
In 1999, Columbia/Legacy released a retrospective album that covers Rush’s recorded musical history from 1962 to the present. It included tracks recorded for Columbia, Elektra, Prestige and his independent years. Entitled “The Very Best of Tom Rush: No Regrets”, the 17-track compilation included a brand new composition, “River Song,” which featured vocal contributions from Grammy winners Shawn Colvin and Marc Cohn.
A live CD, “Trolling for Owls” released in 2003 and published by Rush’s NIGHTLIGHT RECORDINGS, captures his complete performance and includes, for the first time, some of the spoken stories that have endeared him to audiences.
In 2009, Rush recorded his first studio CD in 35 years. Recorded in Nashville, “What I Know” was produced by Rush’s long-time friend Jim Rooney and includes original material, as well as harmonies by Emmylou Harris, Bonnie Bramlett and Nanci Griffith. Today, Rush lives in Kittery, Maine when he’s not touring.
Tickets for Tom Rush’s upcoming concert range from $35-$47.50. A $2.50 ticket fee is added to the ticket price by the vendor. Tickets are available online at GracieTheatre.com or by calling the box office at 207-941-7888.
The Gracie Theatre, in a collaboration between artists, students, and university constituents, is an intimate and inviting performing arts facility that provides hands-on experiential learning and technical support services for the Husson University community through a combination of diverse cultural programming and community engagement. Learn more about the Gracie Theatre and upcoming shows at GracieTheatre.com.
For nearly 125 years, Husson University has shown its adaptability and strength in delivering educational programs that prepare future leaders to handle the challenges of tomorrow through innovative undergraduate and graduate degrees. With a commitment to delivering affordable classroom, online and experiential learning opportunities, Husson University has come to represent a superior value in higher education. The hallmarks of a Husson education include advanced knowledge delivered through quality educational programs in business; health and education; pharmacy studies; science and humanities; as well as communication. According to an analysis of tuition and fees by U.S. News & World Report, Husson University is one of the most affordable private colleges in New England. For more information about educational opportunities that can lead to personal and professional success, visit Husson.edu.