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Tom Rush

With his warm and slightly world-weary baritone voice, solid acoustic guitar playing, and gifted if hardly prolific songwriting skills, Tom Rush was one of the finest and most unsung performers to come out of the '60s urban folk revival. Born February 8, 1941 in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Rush began his performing career in 1961 while attending Harvard University (where he majored in English literature), and he soon became a regular on the east coast folk circuit. A careful, unhurried songwriter, he was also a fine song interpreter, and had a knack for finding just the right song from new songwriters, being the first to introduce work from then-new songwriters like Joni Mitchell, James Taylor, Jackson Browne, Murray McLauchlan, William Hawkins, and David Wiffen, among others, and found ways to breathe new life into any number of traditional folk, country, and blues numbers, as well. In a five-decade career that has been steady and consistent but hardly lived out in the public spotlight, Rush has recorded a little less than 20 albums, several of them live sets -- a spare output given the length of his recording career, but it is a sturdy legacy by anyone's measure, with at least one of his compositions, the resigned and bittersweet "No Regrets" from 1968, standing as an acknowledged classic in the folk field. To highlight a half century as a performing artist, Rush released Celebrates 50 Years of Music, a live CD and DVD set drawn from a show held at Boston Symphony Hall in December 2012. ~ Steve Leggett
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: What I Know

1. Hot Tonight

2. East Of Eden

3. River Song

4. Too Many Memories

5. What I Know

6. All A Man Can Do

7. Fall Into The Night

8. Casey Jones

9. You're Not Here With Me

10. What An Old Lover Knows

11. Silly Little Diddle

12. Lonely

13. No One Else But You

14. One Good Man

15. Drift Away

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Track List: The Very Best Of Tom Rush: No Regrets

x

Track List: Tom Rush / Wrong End Of The Rainbow

2. Rainy Day Man

3. Drop Down Mama

5. Lullaby

6. These Days

7. Wild Child (World Of Trouble)

8. Colors Of The Sun

9. Livin' In The Country

10. Child's Song

11. Wrong End Of The Rainbow

12. Biloxi

13. Merrimac County

14. Riding On A Railroad

16. Starlight

17. Sweet Baby James

18. Rotunda

19. Jazzman

20. Gnostic Serenade

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Track List: Tom Rush

1. Driving Wheel

2. Rainy Day Man

3. Drop Down Mama

4. Old Man's Song

5. Lullaby

6. These Days

7. Wild Child

8. Colors Of The Sun

9. Livin' In The Country

10. Child's Song

x

Track List: The Circle Game

1. Tin Angel

2. Something In The Way She Moves

3. Urge For Going

4. Sunshine Sunshine

5. The Glory Of Love

6. Shadow Dream Song

7. The Circle Game

8. So Long

9. Rockport Sunday

10. No Regrets

Comments

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In the late 60's I liked to hear Tom Rush sing a song titled "The Urge for Going" or something close. I wonder why I don't hear it here.
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WOW...The Main Point!!! I forgot all about that place! I saw a great Tom Paxton concert there circa 1974. I'll have to Google it right now!
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johnsonpcj
saw him at the Main Point in Byrn Mawr pa in 60's and always stop to listen when one of his songs come up on Pandora
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There should be a ban on playing 'Urge for Going' in May. It's like listening to 'Monday Monday' on Thursday!
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i agree... in extent, miapre/johnr a m s d e l l . . . . . though would you both also agree; that to some extent and quite possibly to an even more extent, Rush would have it this way
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mlapre
I agree with johramsdell1 that this bio is really not accurate as far as Tom Rush's influence. He is a song stylist extraordinai r e and has a large loyal following after almost 60 years in the business and should really be considered more than just a folk singer. HIs accomplishme n t s and influence in mellow rock are greater than the bio presented in Pandora.
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This seems like a really negative bio. Please consider rewriting it and wording it a bit more positively. The man's career and talent do not deserve denigration.
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A trick or two.
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tecktiel
I love his version of Joshua Gone Barbados. I think it's about a union leader in Jamaica who disappeared on vacation at a critical time. I am not sure if that is a cover or an original.
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Tom's cover of Child's Song is one of my favorite songs (written by Murray McLauchlan). I have seen Tom many times and he always puts on a great show. I had an opportunity to pound nails when he had a recording studio built upstairs in his barn/garage in Hillsborough , New Hampshire in 1975. Hope to keep on seeing him preform!!!
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National treasure.
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Love!
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Great writer and interpreter of song
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r.siegel.rho d e
Always amazing...
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after all the years of enjoying his music I finally saw him live in Orlando and met him during intermission . His voice is as good as ever as is his newer music. I hope to get more venues to request he visit as he will undoubtedly find many others who want to see him perform.
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When I was young, I thought Child's Song was exceedingly trite; a bunch of clichés linked to a pseudo-melan c h o l y melody. Forty years later...well , it's still not a great piece of writing, but I find it surprisingly poignant...n o t as meaningful in my own life, but as a sort of requiem for the late 60s/early 70s--it's a folk-lover's 'Teach Your Children.' Each of us must do the things that matter...
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Yep, my brother introduced him to me also!! Love "Kids these days"!
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On No Regrets on the original 'concept' album, the ending segues into Tin Angel which began the album. It's one of the most beautiful and poignant endings, and incredibly clever in its time (alas, with the demise of 'albums,' probably for quite a while. It pains me that the Pandora version of the song omitted those 20 seconds.
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Dec. 28 - Boston Symphony Hall - Gonna' be another amazing evening with Tom leading the merriment. Heard it might be the last one for a bit, so worth checking out ticket availability .
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My brother, Bill introduced me to Tom Rush-I thank you. Yes he is one of the most underappreci a t e d singers of the last 50 years-but maybe this is the way he likes it!
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Urge For Going IS a classic!
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Btuc49
To get myself thru some rough patches in the 60s I could always depend on Tim Buckley and Tom Rush
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salrorharvey
wow! love this guy. Great voice
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And a shout out to Merrimack County---the 2nd best thing he ever wrote (after No Regrets).
BTW, I love the pairing of Rockport Sunday and No Regrets...bu t in that order. Interesting that he reversed them live. I have to think about the deeper meaning in that.
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Ended my radio show at WUMB in Boston w No Regrets/ Rockport Sunday every night as the commuting students streamed out into traffic and the sun set over Dorchester bay. Memories.
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Gre
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Taught me my first guitar chord at Groton School
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jog056
i am going to see Tom in Ardmore PA! 4/4/14 !!
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I would say to k12 (about his Tom Rush comment) We are......! Thank you.
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Saw Tom first time at Boston U while visiting my g/f in 1969. I've aseen him close up twice in Philly in the 90's at The Tin Angel. Spoke a bit with him and found him to be a genuine person.
Rockport Sunday is my all time favorite piece. The Circle Game album was an obsession throughout college at Penn State and during my many turntable record years.
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When I was asked to choose song to dance with my son at his wedding I chose The Circle Game. That song always makes me cry and I had lots of company for that dance -precious moment.
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wfnolan
Tom played on the Cape this Summer. I never saw Tom Perform before. I always enjoyed his Voice and his Acoustic Guitar Style. I actually Closed my eyes just to Hear Tom Sing and Play during his Concert. He Sounds Exactly like His Albums. Tom is also an Interesting and Humors Story Teller. Check Out his website to see if Tom is Performing near you.You will Cherish the Experience. I have.
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I love this. I first heard it when i was 16 and now I am 61: circles indeed - still as good as ever and equally as poignant.
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A real treasure in the folk world. Urge for Going always brings tears to my eyes and forces me to think about life and its choices.
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I can't begin to describe how Tom Rush's songs make me feel. Maybe it's the quality of his voice, his interpretati o n , or how much of himself he puts into the words, but it's so much more than that for me. His songs have been oh wow moments for me for over 40 years. The review here doesn't begin to capture his talent. I've spoken to him at each of the 10 concerts or so that I've been to and he's been as kind and receptive at every one. And, Trolling for Owls makes me laugh every time!
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First time I heard Childs Song I was leaving for college. Now 40 years later I played it for my kids as they are leaving home. It still brings goosebumps every time. I bought the 50 year disc and DVD; it is great stop reading this and order it now!!! Thanks toTom for turning me on to Jackson, James, and Joni.
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Steve Legget...reb e l without a clue about Tom Rush.

I first heard him at the Cellar Door in Wash DC about 1967. I have had the pleasure of at least 25 performances over the years from DC to Philly to CA. I saw him last year in the California Wine Country and he is just getting better; his guitar playing. his aging gravelly voice and his intimate touch with his audiences.
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He is no Rev Gary Davis
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throw your fat leg over me
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A documentary film on Tom due out soon.
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Let us not forget that TR was more than interpreting new singer-songw r i t e r s , indeed, he was the one who first introduced Joni Mitchell, James Taylor and Jackson Browne to a worldwide audience, beginning their spectacular careers!
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Had the amazing privilege of attending his Symphony Hall Concert last year--5th row, center. He's a personal friend of a friend so I was introduced. Let me tell ya, he's the Real Thing. What a genuinely great guy. That was a transporting evening.
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My brother turned me on to Tom Rush in '69. All I have to do is listen to TR and I'm back there again. Now those were the Golden Years!
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I feel such deep emotion listening to these songs-the very best of the best Wow...
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Now, thats music....
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I first had the pleasure of hearing Tom at Club 47 in Cambridge, MA., around 1968. He was terrific then and continues to be.
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kvons1
Great ole New Hampshire boy Tom Rush. Seriously under-rated true artist of the times. The Urge For Going & Drivn' Wheel---2 greats among many others. Still have the mint original 1970 vinyl LP debut album after all these years.
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Saw him in Syracuse NY 79 A great year.
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Yep, "urge for going" is a great song. The bio is less than flattering for someone as important as Tom Rush. It took me 25 years to finally see him, but was great when I did.
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Check out his version of child's song Stunningly beautiful
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