Rusty Swanson - Fiddle, Accoustic Guitar, Lead and Harmony Vocals
Originally from Oklahoma (don't hold that against him) he got to Texas as fast as he could. He was raised with a strong musical background and started playing music professionally at the age of 16 as a guitar player with a local high school band.
The band was good enough to gain sponsorship from KOMA and WKY radio stations and toured central and western Oklahoma playing "teen bop" dances.
His transition from guitar to fiddle came at the request of a friend who was putting together a bluegrass band and they quickly became an Oklahoma favorite. One youngster who hung around the band picking up tips was a kid by the name of Vince Gill!
Rusty moved to Texas during the late 60's and headed to Austin right about the time Willie and Waylon were becoming well-known. Rusty played with the Silver City Saddle Tramps, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Michael Martin Murphy, and even had the distinction of playing one of Willie Nelson's first Fourth of July Picnics.
Rusty's travels eventually landed him in Singapore, of all places, in 1983 when he took a job playing with the house band at a country/western club. The band was immensely successful and packed the house every night.
Texas kept calling though, and Rusty finally moved back home where he quickly established himself as a fixture on the Austin music scene.
Rusty's resume includes work with Kevin Welch, Darrell McCall, Johnny Lyons, Billy Joe Royal, and most recently, the "Lonesome Dove" band. He's also a highly requested session player. He's opened for Marty Robbins, Mel Tillis, John Anderson, Lee Roy Parnell, and the Dixie Chicks.
They say if you're gonna play in Texas, you've gotta have a fiddle in the band and Rusty certainly proves this rule. From "Faded Love" to "South's Gonna Do It Again", Rusty Swanson definitely puts the "T" in Somewhere in Texas.