Interviews of Rusty Anderson
Dec 15, 2003 • From MACCA-Central
May 12, 2003 • From MACCA-Central
2001 • From Beatlefan
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Rusty Anderson is part of Paul’s backing band since 2001.
I must credit David Kahne the producer for inviting me to play on the Driving Rain album. Ever since then we be rocking, man!Rusty Anderson, from Freshen Up tour book, 2018
Rusty Anderson (born January 20, 1959) is an American guitarist and singer-songwriter originally from La Habra, California. He is best known as the lead guitarist for Sir Paul McCartney, though he has worked with an extensive list of artists in addition to his own solo career.
For his debut album Undressing Underwater, Anderson invited Paul McCartney to play bass and the rest of the McCartney band to sing backup vocals on the lead track, “Hurt Myself“. Friend and former band mate Stewart Copeland also came in to play drums on the song “Catbox Beach”. The album was self-produced by Anderson, along with David Kahne, Mudrock and Parthenon Huxley. Undressing Underwater was originally released in late 2003 by his own Oxide Records, and re-released in September 2005 on Surfdog Records, iTunes and Amazon. Anderson’s second album Born On Earth was released October 2009. His third album Until We Meet Again was released in the spring of 2013, with pre-release copies available during the winter 2012 leg of Paul McCartney’s On The Run tour.
Rusty Anderson Afternoon
Joining with his longtime collaborator, Todd O’Keefe, Anderson formed his new band “Rusty Anderson Afternoon” in 2013. O’Keefe is a Los Angeles musician known for his work with Ray Davies and The 88. O’Keefe and Anderson had played together for several years in Anderson’s solo group, introduced variously as “Rusty Anderson Band” and “Rusty Anderson and Friends“. The band performed in cities throughout the USA, The UK and Iceland. Once Anderson and O’Keefe began sharing writing duties and singing lead vocals, it was time to pick a name for the new band. A contest was held online in 2013. Fans voted for their favorite band name and the winner was “Rusty Anderson Afternoon.”
Now officially a band, they released their first album on the Oxide Records label. Rusty Anderson Afternoon EP II, released July 31, 2014 was produced by Anderson and Paul Ratazcjack, whom Anderson worked with years earlier with the bands Soldier and The Living Daylights. Their first single “Effortless” was released April 30, 2013. “Effortless” made it to #1 at Sirius Radio’s “20 on 20“. The second single, a version of the Stewart and Gouldman song “I’m not in Love” began in rotation on “The Blend,” a Sirius radio station, in August 2014. The Rusty Anderson Afternoon song “Points of Interest” was also featured on the hit CBS comedy The Big Bang Theory in 2014. […]
In 2001, Anderson, along with drummer Abe Laboriel Jr., got a call from producers Mo Jackson and David Kahne to play and sing on Sir Paul McCartney’s record Driving Rain; this became the birth of the Paul McCartney Band. After finishing the record and performing at The Concert for New York City, the band went on the road for a critically acclaimed tour, playing well over 100 shows in the US, Japan, Mexico and Europe, including those at the Roman Colosseum, Live 8 UK and Red Square in Moscow. Following the success of this tour four DVDs were released, all featuring Anderson on guitar: Back in the U.S., Back in the World, Paul McCartney in Red Square and The Space Within US. In addition to the studio album Driving Rain, Anderson would go on to play guitar on McCartney’s Chaos and Creation in the Backyard and, in addition to guitar work, would also contribute vocals to the 2007 release, Memory Almost Full. He also took part in Good Evening New York City and Good Evening Europe. Anderson continued performing during the Summer Live ’09 Tour and the Up and Coming Tour (2010-2011). In 2012, several prominent performances included the Olympics opening ceremony and the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Concert. McCartney released “New” in 2013 to which Anderson contributed guitar and backing vocals. The Out There tour began in the USA in 2014 and continued in 2015.
Anderson’s collaborations and recordings include music by Elton John, Little Richard, New Radicals, Willie Nelson, Sinéad O’Connor, The Wallflowers, Jewel, Santana, Stevie Nicks, Ronan Keating and Joe Cocker, plus Ricky Martin’s unforgettable surf riff in “Livin’ La Vida Loca.” Also, The Bangles, Fishbone, Matthew Sweet, Neil Diamond, Animal Logic (with Stewart Copeland and Stanley Clarke), Belinda Carlisle, Susanna Hoffs, Parthenon Huxley and Carole King; Gwen Stefani, Steven Tyler, Richie Sambora, Regina Spektor, Dido, Cat Stevens, Miley Cyrus, Eros Ramazzotti, Nelly Furtado, Meat Loaf, Robi Draco Rosa, Lisa Marie Presley and k.d. lang. In addition to Anderson’s solo songwriting career, he has written with and produced acts such as Chris Shaffer of The Why Store, Jordan Lawhead and Emma Burgess, resulting in song uses in TV shows Cold Case, Men In Trees, Kyle XY and Wildfire. […]
Now tell me about your first meeting with Paul McCartney.
I was talking to David [Kahne] on the phone. He goes, “Turns out I’m going to do the new Paul McCartney record.” I go, “Great. If you need any guitar playing, let me know.” He goes, “I was thinking the same thing.”
I didn’t really talk about it with anyone. But then two months later, I walked into Henson studio [in Los Angeles] and met a number of English blokes. Then I met Paul. Within like half an hour, we were jamming, playing music.
Paul is friggin’ Paul McCartney. It took me a few days to get used to being around him. Even though he’s very disarming and very warm. He was cool. It was just hard to connect those dots between having him as an almost mythical figure to having him in front of me and conversing with him, and being in the moment.
The beautiful thing about music is that you can just get to it and start playing. Your focus is on that. It’s a great way to communicate.
Did you think this was just going to be a one-off job with Paul, like with Elton or Neil Diamond?
I think the idea was to kind of turn it into a live thing. You don’t want to assume anything, though. In Hollywood, you hear a lot of stuff that doesn’t happen. I can’t tell you how many times, especially back as a teenager or in my twenties, things looked like they were happening, but people were just full of shit or something changes or whatever. I try not to assume anything. It took a while. We did the Concert for New York before the tour.Rusty Anderson – Interview with Rolling Stone – October 11, 2023
How much time you spend with him offstage?
Here and there. A lot of times, you go on a tour and you spend a lot of time with these people, the band and Paul. We’ll get together and have dinners or sit on an airplane together or backstage, rehearsing. You spend a lot of time with them. When we go on break, we’ll occasionally text or whatever, have phone calls, maybe a dinner. But it’s sort of the way it is. If you have just a friend, you might be like, “Let’s go bowling or see a movie or go on a hike,” you might see them once a week. Then you have your day job and you do those kind of things.
When you’re touring with people, it’s really condensed. You see these people a lot. Because of that, when you’re on a break, you might not have a tendency to go, “Let’s hang out again. I’ll see you every week.” That’s because now you’re on a break and you have your other friends at home.Rusty Anderson – Interview with Rolling Stone – October 11, 2023
Last updated on October 20, 2023
Albums, EPs & singles which Rusty Anderson contributed to
By Paul McCartney • Official album
Contribution: Acoustic guitar • 1 songs
By Various Artists • Official album
Contribution: Guitar, Vocals • 1 songs