TAMPA — Red Wanting Blue will perform Saturday, Jan. 21, 8 p.m., at Skipper’s Smokehouse, 910 Skipper Road, Tampa.
Cost is $22 in advance and $25 the day of the show. Visit skipperssmokehouse.com.
Led by Scott Terry, Red Wanting Blue formed in Athens, Ohio, in 1996. Over the last two decades, the band has established itself as one of the indie world’s most enduring and self-sufficient acts, notching appearances everywhere from Letterman to NPR and reaching No. 3 on the Billboard Heatseekers chart, all while operating largely outside the confines of the traditional music industry. For “The Wanting,” their most recent album, the band handed production duties over to acclaimed singer/songwriter Will Hoge, who helped them create their most ambitious, fully realized collection yet. Recorded in Nashville, Tennessee, the 2018 record draws on many of the group’s traditional strengths — indelible melodies, infectious hooks, explosive performances — even as the making of it pushed them far outside their comfort zone and forced them to take an unprecedented, nearly year-long break from touring.
Alternately triumphant and melancholic, the songs on “The Wanting” are both muscular and nuanced, with frontman Scott Terry’s epic, heartfelt vocals soaring above the band’s gritty brand of driving rock and roll. The record opens with the rousing “High and Dry,” a feel-good rocker that also serves as something of a mission statement for a fiercely independent group that’s as much a band as they are a family.
“This is really the most collaborative album our band has ever made,” said Terry in a press release from Michael J. Media. “It’s the first record where every member contributed to the writing, and I feel like we all matured as artists because of it.”
Over the course of 10 previous studio albums, Red Wanting Blue brought their passionate, unforgettable live show to every city and town that would have them, blazing their own distinctive trail through the American heartland as they built up the kind of fanatically dedicated audiences normally reserved for arena acts. In 2016, they celebrated with a 20th anniversary retrospective album/concert film entitled “RWB20 Live at Lincoln Theater,” which captured the band in all their glory at a sold-out hometown show in Columbus, Ohio.
Red Wanting Blue has released 11 full-length albums to date, including “Velveteen” (1996), “Image Trigger” (1998), “Model Citizen” (2000), “Sirens” (2001), “Souvenirs of City Life” (2002), “Pride: The Cold Lover” (2004), “The Warehouse Sessions” (2006), “These Magnificent Miles” (2008 and re-release, 2010), “From the Vanishing Point” (2011), “Little America” (2014), and “The Wanting” (2018).
Red Wanting Blue band members include Scott Terry on vocals, tenor guitar, and ukulele; Mark McCullough on bass, Chapman stick, and vocals; Greg Rahm on guitar, keyboards, and vocals; Eric Hall on guitar, lap steel, and vocals; and Dean Anshutz on drums and percussion.