with Rick Brantley
with Rick Brantley
|Age:||Ages 21+ Only|
Best known as an actor, Sutherland pursued a musical career in the 2000's during the height of his "24" fame. Now he is touring to promote his latest album "Down in a Hole."Buy Tickets
Best known as an actor, Sutherland pursued a musical career in the 2000's during the height of his "24" fame. Now he is touring to promote his latest album "Down in a Hole."
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Kiefer Sutherland has been a professional actor for over thirty years, starring in movies like ‘Stand By Me’, ‘The Lost Boys’, ‘Young Guns’, Flatliners’, ‘A Few Good Men’, ‘A Time to Kill’, ‘Dark City’, ‘Melancholia’ and most recently, a western called ‘Forsaken,’ as well as the TV series ‘24.’
But unknown to many during the course of his career, he has taken on other vocations with the same kind of dedication and commitment. The first one, beginning around 1992, was that of a cattle rancher and competitive cowboy (roper) in the USTRC team roping circuit. He ran a successful ranch with partner John English for almost a decade. During that timeframe, Sutherland won numerous roping events around the country including Phoenix, Indio and the Los Angeles Open.
In 2002, Sutherland, with his music partner and best friend Jude Cole, began a small record label called Ironworks. The goal of this label was to record local musicians and distribute their music at a time when the music industry was going through a monumental shift. Some of their artists included Rocco DeLuca and the Burden, HoneyHoney and Billy Boy On Poison. In 2009, Sutherland left the label to recharge and figure out what he was going to do next.
In early 2015 Sutherland played Cole two songs he had written and wanted to record as demos for other artists to record. Cole responded positively to the songs and the album grew organically from those recordings. Two songs became four and four grew into six, until Cole suggested that they make a record. Their collaboration resulted in Kiefer Sutherland’s upcoming debut album: ‘Down In A Hole’.
Sutherland says of the 11 tracks that make up the album, “It’s the closest thing I’ve ever had to a journal or diary. All of these songs are pulled from my own personal experiences. There is something very satisfying about being able to look back on my own life, good times and bad, and express those sentiments in music. As much as I have enjoyed the writing and recording process, I am experiencing great joy now being able to play these songs to a live audience, which was something I hadn’t counted on”.
So, what to make of this Rick Brantley? This seeker of the life-changing novel and the perfect pair of beat-to-hell boots; this connoisseur of the cool classic movie and the greasiest dive-bar cheeseburger, disciple of the museum’s masterpiece and the panhandler’s wiliest street-pitch? This guy who lives it, loves it, takes it all in and pours out something so tight and right you just gotta hear it again and again? Well, let’s just tell it straight: Rick Brantley is a singer-songwriter who can seriously, seriously write and sing; a rocker who can really, truly rock. A young man worth listening to.
Rick Brantley was born and raised in the musical mecca of Macon, Georgia, a preacher’s son, soaking up the strains of gospel music, fire-and-brimstone sermons and the echoes of musical legends: Blind Willie McTell, Otis Redding, The Allman Brothers. “My Dad dug the local heroes, and was big on pop/rock hitmakers of the 70’s, too, like Three Dog Night. We had a little home recording studio; music was such a part of everything”, Rick says. He was also inspired by singer-songwriters like Bruce Springsteen and Billy Joel. “You learn from those guys and they lead you to Kristofferson, Guy Clark, Townes Van Zandt,” he adds. Brantley learned his lessons well: barely out of high school, his own songs and red-hot band performances led to a publishing contract and new home base in Nashville. Since then, his songs have been covered by artists ranging from Meat Loaf to country crooner David Nail, while he’s continued honing his stage chops as both full-tilt rock-show frontman and acoustic solo performer, opening for acts as diverse as John Hiatt, Zac Brown Band, Better Than Ezra, and Steve Earle.
Brantley’s brand-new EP, LO-FI, leans into his thoughtful, thought-provoking side. “I was on the road last year with Hiatt — just me and an acoustic guitar — and only my previous rock record to sell.” The difference in styles influenced a conversation with award-winning songwriter Mark Selby, Rick’s producer. “We had these songs that were never going to be on the full-band rock record we’re working on — more like singer-songwriter stuff. So, we just decided to make a live-in-the-studio record of those tunes, with just us playing.”
With LO-FI, Brantley achieves a raw but rich acoustic sound. “Almost everything you hear on the record is live and in the moment. It was one of the most fun things I’ve ever done. I got to do songs that I really loved, with one of my best friends in the world. It was just a blast. I hope everybody likes it.”
LO-FI includes a cavalcade of emotions: the world-weariness of “40 Days,” the romantic yearning of “Claudette,” and the jaw-dropping “Enough Rope,” a flawed-narrator character study ruminating on a life’s worth of foibles: “Money talks, and liquor whispers, and I have listened to them both. . . I’ve learned less than I’ve forgotten, and there’s still more I wish I didn’t know. And a man will hang himself most likely, if you give him enough rope.” Then there’s the stunning cover of Otis Redding’s “Try A Little Tenderness,” which Brantley admits was more than a little daunting. “That was terrifying. Mark had to really twist my arm on that. It’s definitely in my top two or three favorite songs, but who would want to follow Otis Redding? But Mark talked me into trying it on the road with John Hiatt, and it went over like gangbusters, so we decided to put it on the record.”
Brantley will be hitting the road to promote LO-FI while continuing work on his next full studio album. He’s looking forward to sharing the inspiration behind his lyrics, both onstage and in a series of podcasts. “That’s the plan. We’re booking solid right now. I love being up there and telling stories, which is what the show is all about. It’s a different energy than with my band, but we’re getting a really good response with it, and having a lot of fun!”
So back to our original question: what to make of this talented Rick Brantley? If enough of us hear him, see him, watch him own another stage. . . well, we might just make him a household name.