Rusted Root

From Academic Kids

Rusted Root is a band from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania known for their fusion of Grateful Dead-style bluegrass with a strong percussion section that draws from African and Middle Eastern influences. Although they are often lumped together with other bands under the jam band label, Rusted Root rejects this categorization. Their songs are more melodic than jam-based, even in the live setting.

Rusted Root was born in 1992 with their indie debut Cruel Sun, which was rereleased in 2002. Their main-label debut album was 1994's When I Woke, a hit on college radio and platinum record. Along with their increasingly well-known live shows, Rusted Root began working on contributions to the movies Twister and Home for the Holidays. Their next studio album was Remember (1996), followed by Rusted Root (1998) and Welcome to My Party (2002). Welcome to My Party was much criticised by fans, who are affectionately known as "Rootheads". Many felt the band's departure from tribal grooves to a "poppier" feel was an attempt to "sell out". Remember reached the Top 40 in the US, while Rusted Root found its sale buoyed by the use of the band's cover of The Rolling Stones' "You Can't Always Get What You Want" on an episode of Ally McBeal. A live double album followed in 2004. Their greatest hits album was recently released in April 2005 by 20th Century Masters Collection. They have two EPs, Evil Ways and Airplane and a documentary video cassette that came packaged with the EP Live.

Although the band continues to tour, their hard-touring days appear over. They are spending more time apart to pursue solo projects. Lead singer/guitarist Michael Glabicki has a solo cd Uprooted, as do bassist Patrick Norman, vocalist Liz Berlin, and guitarist/vocalist Jenn Wertz. Drummer Jim Donovan has a dance album Revelation #9 and two meditation CDs titled Indigo and Pulse. In addition he teaches rhythm and drumming workshops around the country.

Rusted Root's "Send Me on My Way" was used on the soundtrack of both Matilda and Ice Age. Their music has also appeared on the television shows Party of Five and Homicide.

Members of the band include lead singer/guitarist Michael Glabicki, vocalist Liz Berlin, bassist Patrick Norman, vocalist/guitarist Jenn Wertz, drummer Jim Donovan, and all-around musician Jim Buynak.


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