Tell us the brief history of your band or musical career.
I started playing music when I was 16 and played around the local Bristol scene for a few years before joining a few Rockabilly bands. I toured the UK and Europe and recorded a couple of albums with these until 2014, when I decided to start my own, Blues based project called “Ruzz Guitar's Blues Revue”. Since starting this band, I have played all over the UK, Europe and USA... recorded and released multiple albums and have the honour of being endorsed by Gretsch Guitars.
Who are your musical and non-musical influences?
I only have musical influences as I'm mainly into music related stuff. Some of my biggest influences would be Jimmie Vaughan, Brian Setzer, George Thorogood and Reverend Horton Heat (to name a few).
What album has had the greatest impact on your life as a musician?
I'd have to say, The Brian Setzer Orchestra's “The Ultimate Collection” double CD. I remember hearing that album when I was starting to learn to play guitar and knew instantly that I wanted to capture that sound with my own band sometime in the future.
Is there a particular song that has resonated with you for a long time?
There's two... Brian Setzer's version of “Sleepwalk” and Jimmie Vaughan's “Extra Jimmies” (from his early Fabulous Thunderbirds days). I have been playing my own rendition of “Sleepwalk” since I learnt to play the song and will keep including it in my set for years to come. It's such a beautiful instrumental and such a pleasure to play live.
What’s your favorite accomplishment as a musician thus far?
Receiving an endorsement from Gretsch Guitars is top of the list...
What inspires you to write the music you write?
I try to write music that I want to hear. I once heard Jimmie Vaughan mention that in an interview and it stuck with me. Sometimes I'll get a riff idea, a lyrical idea and I'll go with it and see where it takes me but I won't complete it if I'm not feeling excited about it. I need to enjoy hearing it as much as I enjoy listening to my favourite artist's music... if I don't feel that way, then I scrap it.
What made you want to play the instrument you play?
It was the first instrument that I felt really excited to pick up everyday after school... I had taught myself drums and bass but the guitar was the first one that really spoke to me. I was taken to see George Thorogood live in my hometown just after I started learning and from that moment, I knew this was my path.
How are you continuing to grow musically?
I am always trying to push myself musically... I try to stay away from any comfort zones as much as I can and I always try to take my music someone new. I'll hear something from a Big Band horn section and I'll try to recreate it on my guitar, or incorporate it in my music through my own horn section. I'm always listening, learning and trying new ideas.
If you could play anywhere or with anyone in the world, where or with who would it be?
I would love to play at Antone's in Austin TX with Jimmie Vaughan... or The Belly Up Tavern in San Diego with either Brian Setzer or The Paladins.
If you could change anything about the music industry today, what would it be?
More support for real Blues artists. There's a lot of support for Blues Rock (especially in the UK) but, it feels to me, that there's not as much here for artists who play more traditional Blues. I've found the US to be very supportive which is why I focus more out there.
What strengths do you have that you believe make you the musician you are?
I know what I like, I know what I'm trying to do and I know how to get there. I have a goal and a plan.
Do you have any anxiety about performing live?
I feel more nervous when I'm opening for an artist as I can feel the pressure of trying to win over a new audience. I feel more excited when playing to my own following and feel a lot more relaxed to try something new.
If you had to choose one... live performance or studio work, which do you prefer and why?
I prefer live performances. I love the instant response from the audience. It makes me feel good knowing that people are enjoying the music I'm creating... I love studio work and love recording new music but you don't get that instant response from the people who listen to it like you do with live performances.
Give us some advice for new musicians just starting out in the industry.
Find out what it is you like about the music you're playing and do that for YOU. Don't try to conform to the scene... stick to what you love and people who love that will follow and support.
What is your favorite piece of gear and why?
My Gretsch Black Falcon guitar... as soon as I got it, I retired all other guitars and starting using it for every show from day one. It's everything I wanted from a professional range Gretsch and more!
How do you promote your band and shows?
I've found Bandsintown has been very good for promoting shows recently. I use the other forms of social media as well but I'm really enjoying discovering more about Bandsintown.
What is the best way to stay updated on current news; gigs, releases, etc.
You can follow me on Bandsintown (Ruzz Guitar's Blues Revue), Facebook, TikTok etc and also through my website www.thebluesrevue.com
Anything you would like to share, from new merch to upcoming shows/tours or songs/albums?
I have a US tour being booked for May -July 2023. It's also looking like I'll be heading to Canada in 2023 as well as starting to record a new album.