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Robert Randolph & The Family Band

A virtuoso on the pedal steel guitar, Robert Randolph set the music world on fire in 2000 when he began playing his first club dates in New York City. Randolph started playing the instrument as a church-going teenager in Orange, New Jersey, a small city just outside of Newark. He regularly attended the House of God Church, an African-American Pentecostal denomination that had been implementing steel guitars (or "Sacred Steel") in services since the '30s, with the pedal steel in particular being introduced during the '70s. Randolph learned to play by watching other steel players during church services; years later, he updated that sacred basis with a secular mix of funk and soul, giving a new multicultural facelift to an instrument that had often been associated with country music.

In early 2000, Jim Markel heard Randolph play at the Sacred Steel Convention in Florida and subsequently introduced him to his friend Gary Waldman. Together, Waldman and Markel began to manage Randolph's career, which took flight after Matt Hickey, a talent buyer at Manhattan's Bowery Ballroom, signed Randolph on as the opening act for the North Mississippi Allstars. Within a month, Randolph had graduated to the Beacon Theater, where he played alongside Medeski, Martin & Wood. Keyboardist John Medeski enjoyed Randolph's playing so much that he asked him to record an instrumental gospel/blues album with the band. The resulting record, The Word, was released in August 2001 to great critical and popular acclaim.

Randolph's own group, the Family Band, includes cousins Danyell Morgan and Marcus Randolph (bass and drums, respectively) and John Ginty (Hammond B-3 organ). The band's career began with opening gigs for a variety of blues, jazz-funk, and jam bands such as the Derek Trucks Band, Karl Denson's Tiny Universe, and Soulive; headlining gigs became the norm within a few months' time. Robert Randolph & the Family Band released Live at the Wetlands in fall 2001, capturing the band's live performance at the legendary Wetlands venue shortly before it closed. The group's studio debut, Unclassified, followed in 2003 and introduced Randolph to an even wider audience. One new fan was veteran guitarist Eric Clapton, who brought the band out on tour and appeared on Robert Randolph's third release, Colorblind, in 2006. In 2010, Randolph teamed up with producer T-Bone Burnett and released the album We Walk This Road which featured guest appearances from Ben Harper, Leon Russell, and Doyle Bramhall II. Randolph spent the better part of three years touring with the Family Band; they signed to Blue Note Records in the interim. Lickety Split appeared in 2013 with guests Trombone Shorty and Carlos Santana. ~ Ann Wickstrom, Rovi
full bio

Comments

Slide and The Family Band ;)
Orange is a small city outside of Newark? Wtf writes these bios?! Nyers ;)
Great job on the opening theme on the SEC NETWORK show!!!!
Ain't nothing wrong with that, Discovery channel promo song a few years back is UFB! The timing is unbelievable , if you haven't seen it, or tried to find it you are not a serious fan. YouTube it!!!
This is new to me and I love it. Sounds like Austin in the late 80s. To me that's gold!!!
That man is amazing
I love the sound of a steel guitar!
First listen by this artist and I LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!! ! Keep it up
Upbeat and fun live. Invited local guitarists on stage to jam, each of 8 people for a moment of fame, including my son. Like someone noted, he smiles a lot and his performance energy is very high. I am impressed by the obvious influence gospel has on his stage show.
jasonfrost24
Don't read this cause it actually works. You will be kissed on the nearest possible Friday by the love of your life. Tomorrow will be the best day of your life. However if you don't post this you will die in 2 days. Now you've started reading so don't stop. This is so scary. Put this on at least 5 songs in 143 minutes. When done press f6 and your lovers name will come on the screen in big letters. This is scary cause it really works
Peace. Love
Happiness. Only way!
He is a inspirationa l musical breath of fresh air!
Robert randolph is awesome
Follow me plz :)))))) i will follow u back thnx
pandora11366 4
Have heard some great tracks from him in the past, but this one (Squeeze) has me shopping for his CDs and tour dates (let alone dancing around the room). At first I thought this was Derek Trucks on speed...
Toe tappin music that turns lemonade into southern sweet tea.
Made me cry
new yrs eve 2012 in chicago!!! cant wait!!! :)
So good. Even better louder.
YES! THANK YOU, GOD! WHAT A GIFT! THANK YOU! YOU ARE SOOO GREAT! (and pandora, you are very appreciated)
I BELIEVE!
mwalker142
You should hear him cover Hendrix. Voodoo Chile, Slight Return - it's freaking unreal.
SO great, it almost makes me believe in things.
golstonv
wow
First saw them open for Dave Matthews Band about 5 yrs ago on Randall's Island in NYC and they blew me away, but when RR came out and laid down the steel for Louisiana Bayou (with DMB) it was pure magic!!! I have never experienced another moment like that at a live show.....sti l l gives me chills just thinking about it.
polarbear081 6
cant wait to see them again in Boston.....b o y . . o . . . . b o y . . . b a d mf'ers
ncacp
If you get a chance to see Robert Randolph live....you must do it...period. You will not regret it. If this music does not get you moving you need to get checked out.
Wanna see them live - listening to his music makes me happy inside, makes me wanna dance and twirl around the room. And yeah, his smile doesn't hurt :)
luvskers06
love rrfb...they have never let me down
love love ~ especially live energetic and alive!
LOVE LOVE LOVE
aburkiewicz
Robert is awesome. Not only is his music great to dance to but he always has a smile on his face and he isn't to shabby to look at either!
I LOVE ROBERT RANDOLPH!!! That is all I can say.
dkomornik
Amazing! (It's all I can say.)
WTF?? That's a pedal steel guitar??? What a gift!!!
this is great
you like these guys check out the campbell brothers .... they are where Robert learned how to play like he does. Granted he has taken the sacred steel sound to a whole new level .... Ted's Jam really is the best ever
Absolutely love this band. Ted's Jam is the best ever, no one can hold still when that song plays!
Awsome talent,great band.Can't miss live act....
very uplifting KindKeith upstate NY peace out
We just saw RR & the Fam in August at the NYS Fair... our second time. Just go hear this group live once. If you like to have fun, you will. They know their roots in gospel and pay homage but don't stop there. They are tight but not uptight. I doubt that you will be able to sit still.
I think this band is near perfection. I love everything about their sound. I would love to see them tour with Marc Broussard. What a show that would be!
Saw them with TBC in Orlando and West Palm Beach. Incredible show. Almost upstaged the crowes :-)
broczila
just heard "Dry Bones" on the radio and said who is this ? It is now my favorite band!
I just saw RRFB on Halloween @ the House of Blues in Dallas. Perhaps the best concert that I've been to...ever. That includes Clapton, Moody Blues, Tower of Power, and others. All of which put on ultra fantastic shows. The musical "looseness" and yet ultra tight groove was amazing. I can't wait to see him again! If you think the recordings are great...SEE THEM LIVE!!!
My friend Karen and I are so excited that you're playing at the Mile High Music Festival in Denver!!! We just bought our tickets today...see you in July!!
one of the most fantastic bands I've ever heard! the trio of steel guitar's, this sound is phenominal!! !
foggylady99
Smoking hot.
If you have not heard of Arhoolie Records and Sacred Steel music, ( where Robert Randolph is from)
check them out. This is the real soul music.
a tremendous unexpected treat for "acid rock" !!!!!
joiegrrlherb a l s
Partying @ a friend's house, Xmas '01, music was on "shuffle", and everytime I heard something I didn't know that knocked me out, I asked who it was - it was ALWAYS Robert Randolph (Wetlands CD)! Blew me outta the water right from the start! See them live - you will leave a better person! Uplifting, indeed!
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