Midwest rock band Red Wanting Blue leaves Tampa ‘wanting more’

Live Review

Red Wanting Blue. Photo by Chyrisse.

By Chyrisse Tabone, Rock At Night Tampa

Live Review: Red Wanting Blue w/Kristopher James – Skipper’s Smokehouse, Tampa, Florida-Saturday, January 27, 2024

Kristopher James.Photo by Chyrisse.

It is always interesting to discover a band that has been making music for the last 27 years. Rock At Night recently reviewed a single, “Goliath,” by Columbus, Ohio stalwarts Red Wanting Blue and was blown away. It really had the mid-90s alt-rock feel of Collective Soul but with the vocals of Eddie Vedder. So, when we saw the band was heading to Tampa for a short stop before heading south to Miami for the Rock Boat XXIII cruise. They  appear to perform regularly on this floating concert ship, which was started by Sister Hazel in 2001.

On January 27th, Rock At Night arrived at Skipper’s Smokehouse to a packed house. The outdoor venue, the Skipperdome, is a landmark in Tampa and has featured top-name blues artists since the 80s. A local artist, Kristopher James, performed a mix of R&B, jazz, and blues for the crowd, who appeared to enjoy the venue’s beachy atmosphere. James asked the audience if they were heading to the Rock Boat, and a third raised their hands.

Scotty Terry of Red Wanting Blue. Photo by Chyrisse.

After James’ set ended, many seated on the wood benches gathered toward the stage to wait for the headliner. Many wore “Red Wanting Blue” t-shirts and appeared to be longtime followers of the band. From the minute lead singer Scott Terry stepped on the stage, he gave it his all as if performing on an arena stage. He moved, gestured, and reached out toward the fans. His baritone voice is superb, sounding very Eddie Vedder-ish on songs like “Audition” and “Hope on a Rope.” It appears Red Wanting Blue has a loyal following, as I observed concert-goers raising arms and singing along to every song. 

The band showed excellent musicianship and even featured a violinist on the song I had been waiting for, “Goliath.” It sounded fleshed out, just like the recorded version. The violinist stuck around for “Walking Shoes,” which gave it an Americana tinge.  The band also created a hoedown, complete with washboard, as they performed Tom Waites’ “Pasties & A G-String (At the Two O’Clock Club).”

I am sure performing in Tampa made the band feel welcome and kicked off a party mood before the cruise heads to the Bahamas and Mexico. The musicianship, performance quality, and songwriting definitely shone on Saturday night. Rock At Night looks forward to hearing their upcoming album Light It Up, released in the summer. 

Red Wanting Blue is:Scott Terry (Vocals, Tenor Guitar, Baritone Ukulele)Mark McCullough (Bass, Chapman Stick, Vocals)Greg Rahm (Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals)Eric Hall (Guitar, Lap Steel, Vocals)Dean Anshutz (Drums & Percussion)


Tour Dates

1/23/24 – Louisville, KY – Zanzibar1/24/24 – Nashville, TN – 3rd & Lindsley1/25/24 – Atlanta, GA – City Winery1/27/24 – Tampa, FL – Skipper’s Smokehouse1/28/24 – Boca Raton, FL – Funky Biscuit1/30 – 2/4/24 – Miami, FL – The Rock Boat XXIII 3/7/24 – Boston, MA – City Winery (w/ The Trews)3/8/24 – Old Saybrook, CT – The Kate (w/ The Trews)3/9/24 – Brooklyn, NY – Brooklyn Made (w/ The Trews)3/12/24 – Philadelphia, PA – City Winery (w/ The Trews)3/13/24 – Washington, DC – The Hamilton Live (w/ The Trews)3/14/24 – Annapolis, MD – Rams Head On Stage (w/ The Trews)3/15/24 – Buffalo, NY – Town Ballroom (w/ The Trews)3/16/24 – Buffalo, NY – Town Ballroom (w/ The Trews)

ABOUT RED WANTING BLUEHailed as “Midwestern rock heroes” by American Songwriter, Red Wanting Blue has spent the better part of last three decades on the road, blazing their own unique trail through the American heartland and landing appearances everywhere from Letterman to NPR, garnering praise from the likes of Rolling Stone and Esquire, and climbing to #3 on the Billboard Heatseekers chart along the way.


Chyrisse Tabone, Ph.D.
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