Hi, I'm Sam Russell. I play and record all sorts of music, mostly different types of rock n' roll,. A few years ago I started a project called The Blue Moon Bible, the goal of which is to use different musical styles and different performers over the course of 8 albums to tell one big story. So far I've put out 6 of the albums, you can check them out here
The Blue Moon Bible is meant to be a lot of things but overall, it's supposed to be fun....and for better or for worse, my own personal handbook for how to be a grown-up,
Now that we got that out of the way, here's a more traditional bio...
SAM RUSSELL PRESENTS..........THE BLUE MOON BIBLE!
Sam Russell was born and raised in Kenosha, WI and currently divides his time between the Midwest and the Pacific Northwest in Seattle, WA. With his backing band The Harborrats (made up of Michael Spaly on guitar, vocals, fiddle and mandolin, Allison Tulloss on vocals, keyboards & flute, Kate Noson on vocals, Ken Nottingham on bass, Aimee Zoe & Dave Forrester on drums and many, many other guests) Sam has recorded a series of albums called The Blue Moon Bible incorporating multiple styles and genres such as folk, soul, doo-wop, bluegrass and most of all....rock n' roll. Their most recent album, The Water Balloon, was released in June 2012 and got added to regular rotation on Seattle’s KEXP 90.3. Also as part of The Blue Moon Bible, Sam released his first solo album The Year of the Cow in October 2012.
Sam was born the son of a minister of a small church in Kenosha. Growing up in a religious household, he was not allowed to listen to Top 40 radio or watch MTV until he was a teenager and instead listened mostly to oldies radio. His tastes were as such shaped at an early age by The Beach Boys, Buddy Holly, Chuck Berry, Phil Spector, Del Shannon and of course, Elvis Presley and The Beatles. His influences eventually evolved to include indie-rock such as Wilco, The Magnetic Fields and Neutral Milk Hotel, deep soul singers such as Joe Tex, Wilson Pickett, Sam & Dave, Irma Thomas, Solomon Burke, country singers like George Jones, Patsy Cline, Charlie Rich, and Johnny Cash, and Americana wordsmiths such as Bob Dylan, Leonard Cohen, Elvis Costello, Iris DeMent and Tom Waits.
Sam originally formed The Harborrats in Kenosha with his best friend Sean Lambrecht. After moving to Seattle, Sam kept the name of the band while forming a new group in order to continue the traditions established in the original version of the band.(for more on the subject, see The Story of The Harborrats) Michael Spaly serves as the main musical foil in the band, employing a wide array of instruments to compliment the songs. Both Kate Noson and Allison Tulloss (who also plays keyboards), as well as Michael, take over lead vocals from Sam on occasion to portray the characters within the songs, along with recurring guest vocal contributers Scott Andrew, Nathan Wade and James Apollo. Ken Nottingham covers the low-end on both upright and electric bass, while Dave Forrester and Aimee Zoe alternate as the drummers.
Sam's live shows alternate between high-energy, no-holds-barred, full-band extravaganzas with intimate, stripped-down solo shows that reveal the more tender side of Sam. His heavily soul-influenced full-band shows have had Sam compared to James Brown, The Clash, Bruce Springsteen, Iggy Pop, Van Morrison and The Band, among many other citations, while his solo shows have wrought comparisons to Iron and Wine, Cat Stevens, Bright Eyes and Ryan Adams.
Throughout this year and next, Sam will be touring and playing around the Pacific Northwest both with The Harborrats and solo to promote The Water Balloon and The Year of the Cow. In August 2013, Sam & The Harborrats will release new single "Static Electricity" as part of The Blue Moon Bible compilation, which will bring together essential tracks from the 6 releases Sam and the band have thus far put out.. A 3-song sampler from The Blue Moon Bible series can be downloaded for free here.