One black, one white. One from Texas, one from Mississippi. One woman (with her band), and one man (solo). Both raised in the church. Both steeped in the tradition of American music, and both putting their own contemporary twists on it - blending blues, rock, gospel, folk, R&B, and country music. Most importantly, both have a whole lotta soul! Ruthie Foster and Paul Thorn have taken their careers to new heights with their most recent releases: Ruthie’s new, deeply intimate recording Let It Burn and Paul’s June 2010 release Pimps & Preachers. But it is their live shows that have really established Ruthie and Paul as two of America’s freshest and finest performers. Perhaps it’s the shared experience of the lively church music of their youth that has made them such compelling entertainers. Ruthie sang in church as a child and Paul was raised the son of a Pentecostal preacher. Whatever the reason, their songs of humanity and redemption have earned them enthusiastic fans and high praise from press, promoters, and fans alike
ABOUT RUTHIE: “Ruthie Foster has established herself as a down-home diva whose assurance and authority have put her on a certain path to stardom.” - Blurt
Following the path to critical acclaim and artistic triumph blazed by her Grammy-nominated 2009 CD The Truth According To Ruthie Foster, Ruthie’s new CD was recorded at the legendary Piety Studios in New Orleans. Let It Burn is a dark, smoky mix of sparsely-crafted originals accompanied by haunting interpretations of an unexpected collection of covers ranging from Adele to Los Lobos, and from The Black Keys to Johnny Cash. Recorded in the voodoo shadows of New Orleans with a small group of A-list musicians led by the Meter’s own George Porter, Ruthie provides her most personal visit yet with her deeply soulful vocals, supported at times by special guests Stax legend William Bell and The Blind Boys of Alabama. Winner of the 2010 Blues Music Award for Contemporary Blues Female Artist of the Year and the 2010 Living Blues Music Award Critic’s Poll for Female Blues Artist of the Year, Ruthie was also named “Best Female Vocalist” at the 2008 Austin Music Awards. She’s been featured on the PBS syndicated show Austin City Limits and NPR’s All Things Considered, and has made impact appearances at the world’s most prestigious festivals and in collaborations with the likes of Bonnie Raitt, Warren Haynes, The Blind Boys of Alabama, and Derek Trucks.
ABOUT PAUL: Paul Thorn’s “gruff voice has gotten him compared to Springsteen and Tom Waits. But when he sits down to write, he’s more like John Prine.” - Newark Star Ledger
Paul Thorn’s life story is a fascinating one - born in Elvis’ birthplace, son of a Pentecostal preacher, boxed former world champ Roberto Duran on national TV, worked in a furniture factory, jumped out of airplanes - but with his new album, Pimps & Preachers, Thorn delves into perhaps the most interesting part of his strange-but-true story. The record charted in Billboard’s Top 100 and was #1 on the Americana radio charts for 3 solid weeks (beating out albums by John Prine, John Mellencamp, and Alejandro Escovedo). Paul has toured with everyone from Huey Lewis & The News to Sting, Mark Knopfler to Bonnie Raitt.
Ruthie Foster and Paul Thorn now bring their joint musical endeavor to a wider audience, beyond geographic and musical frontiers.