Jon Rauhouse (3 Albums, 6 Tracks)
Raised on Easter Island in the Southern Pacific, his destiny as the next tribal chief was derailed when he was struck on his ample head by an eleven-pound coconut. His three weeks of recovery were characterized by feverish rantings about Santo & Johnny and Speedy & Jimmy and cross-dressing. When fully recovered, Jon was uncontrollably lured to the rusty pedal steel guitar that laid for years in the hold of a World War II cargo plane that had crashed on the wrong side of the island many decades before. His playing was flawless; technically proficient, yet totally swashbuckling and swoony. The rest of the islanders quickly grew tired of his noodling and persistent good nature and threw him and his instrument into a hastily constructed out rigger canoe, and cast him from the island. Eventually, Jon found his way to the brown air that shrouds Phoenix and started his career as a stand in for Alice Cooper's snake.
The 70's saw Jon being nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1975. It was his soothing and tropical guitar wizardry that helped set an amicable tone during the negotiations between Henry Kissinger and Le Duc Tho to end the Vietnam War. Henry, being the 20th Century's biggest jackass refused, however, to share the award three ways. (Just one more reason to hate the man). His ego bruised, Jon spent the remainder of the decade defending his enthusiasm for the trend of "streaking."
The keepers at the Bloodshot asylum first noticed him playing with the Grievous Angels. A steel guitar player in a rock band?? Hell YES!!!! His hunched over demeanor and the madman gleam in his eye told us that we had found a kindred spirit.
Since then, Jon has lent his considerable talents to tours and recordings by Neko Case, Sally Timms, Kelly Hogan, Calexico, the Waco Brothers, and Giant Sand. Let’s not forget that the steel guitar and Hawaiian guitar are HARD to play, and he makes it look so easy.
He is also revered in Nottingham, England. Seriously.
(From Bloodshot Records, 5/27/09)
» READ MORE