America Says ‘No’ To...
Sometimes you just have to say ‘NO!’
By: Gina Kay Singerhouse
(This article was printed in the March / April 2005 issue of Strictly Country Magazine.)
2005 - AF Records. In my twelve years in this business I have heard the likes of many inspiring artists. Some who have gone on to claim greatness. Others have only disappeared into an abyss of the unknown. This is one of those groups who will surly fall into that abyss.
Their journey begins in their home town of Moscow, Russia. Red Cowboy is made up of five some what talented men. Each grew up near Moscow’s infamous Gorky Park. An amusement park that draws large numbers of visitors, both foreign and local.
“It is very interesting how we come together.” stated lead vocalist Daniil. “Three of us worked at the park. Nash, Ivan and I were singers in the entertainment zone. It was there where we met Tam and Sasha. Together we become Red Cowboy.”
At first the band was known for their upscale Russian Rock sound. However, after seeing Garth Brooks perform, they changed their format to modern country. A change that didn’t prove worthy.
Through the last five years, Red Cowboy has been making their way towards the United States. What for? I don’t know. They have performed in Europe in cities like Paris, Berlin and Madrid. From there they made their way east to the United Kingdom and Ireland. It was while they were in Ireland that they ran into bad luck.
“Sasha? He died in a bizarre kilt accident.” stated lead guitarist Tam. “They told us that it was better left unsolved. We replaced him with my cousin, Ivan. We call him ‘Spots’ ‘cause he could not see that far.”
Spots was soon to become a better addition to this band. From Ireland, they crossed the Atlantic to head towards their dream, Nashville. However, they were to stop in Canada first. They performed in various cities across the eastern portion of Canada, including Niagara Falls. It was there that they lost their second keyboardist Spots.
“Spots was always drinking.” replied Tam. “He could win at any drinking competition. In Canada, he saw a sign at a bar that said ‘Drink Canada Dry.’ Well, he tried but did not succeed.”
Spots was later replaced by one of their sound men Valadi. Valadi too was a drinker of Russian Vodka. However, when the band finally made it into America, Valadi died of an overdose of American Vodka. Valadi was replaced with the youngest member of the band Vasilii.
While performing in New York city, Red Cowboy met up with Mark Lutes, an inspiring record promoter. Mark was so enthused with Red Cowboy that he started up his own independent record label, entitled AF Records. After nearly a year of performing in the eastern half of the United States, Mark took Red Cowboy to Nashville.
It was in Nashville, that Mark introduced the band to a prominent publicist. Perhaps, she was the smart one of the bunch when she refused to work for Red Cowboy. When asked why, she would only reply “No comment.”
However, the band played on and soon recorded their debut, self entitled album. The album will be released on March 8. It is truly remarkable that anyone would call their style country music. Let alone music in general.
The album consists of ten cuts of pure over rated singles. Singles that include “Moscow Or Bust,” “Gorky Park,” “Party Like Kieve,” “Vodka For A Buck,” and “Help Me Rosa.” However, I strongly believe that “Ten Rubbles For A Shot” says it all. One must be drunk to listen to this band.
The album also consists of “The Ballad Of Red Cowboy.” However, the name “The Ballad of Death” would suit it better. Another uninteresting song is “Holiday In The U.K.” Do you think the unfortunate people in the United Kingdom actually dubbed this song “Banned In The U.K.?”
While in Nashville the band wrote “On Our Way To The U.S.A.” I say if most fans had the opportunity to hear this one they would say ‘The U.S.A. says go away!’ However, my favorite would have to be “Love In Red Square.” I would claim it my favorite if only another artist would record it. Perhaps, Brad Paisley could give this song life after it’s current death.
But, the one thing that gets me is the industries strong belief that Red Cowboy is the next Diamond Rio. I feel sorry for Diamond Rio to even be compared to these guys. To put it in other words, Homer Simpson’s girlish scream sounds better than this band.
Perhaps, the industry is searching for new talent in places they shouldn’t. Unfortunately, country music fans will have to endure Red Cowboy. For on February 4, Red Cowboy announced that they were going on tour throughout the United States. Interesting parties can check out their schedule on page 15. Perhaps the rest of us will have to close our ears to this noise called Red Cowboy.
In the past I have been able to compare new entertainers with veteran entertainers. But, with Red Cowboy, I have had a hard time to give you an example of their style. If you call it a style. The only words that I can think of describing this band is...
On what day did God create Red Cowboy, and couldn’t he have rested on that day too?
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