Rodney Rice, a resident of the Ken Caryl area west of Littleton, developed an interest in music at an early age, he says, as he “pillaged my older sister’s CD and tape collection ... She took me …
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Rodney Rice, a resident of the Ken Caryl area west of Littleton, developed an interest in music at an early age, he says, as he “pillaged my older sister’s CD and tape collection ... She took me to see John Prine. It was the first concert I went to ...” They sat in the back row. Prine “captivated” the young fan and a story began.
Rice’s recent (Oct. 23) release of his own work, “SAME SHIrT, DIFFERENT DAY,” recorded with a band in Austin, Texas, is now available, streaming from Spotify, iTunes, Amazon and more.
West Virginia, where Rice grew up, “is blue-collar working folks. A lot of my family represents that too. I think people relate to the songs of John Prine and Billy Joe Shaver because there’s some kind of underdog way of life. I don’t want to sit on an oil rig anymore, but I had the idea it was what I had to do to pay some bills ...”
He figures his present location, close to the legendary Red Rocks Amphitheatre, is a good choice for a guy who sees his future as a musician instead.
Rice graduated from West Virginia University in 2010 after starting a day job sitting on a rig in 2008, alternated with an office job with the oil company.
For a while, he worked on rigs and in an office in West Texas, where he had a chance to see more major music figures, in addition to Prine and Shaver.
Rice’s wife, who has family in Littleton, Highlands Ranch and Boulder, is a geochemist and Rice “has geology friends in town ...” But there “are no geology jobs” here at this time and Rice is concentrating on this, his second release — with the same band as his first album.
“I chipped away at it for about two years — one piece at a time,” he says, continuing on about how much he “loves going into a studio in Austin and playing live with studio musicians. It’s a company town ...” Songs were recorded one at a time, when he could manage it.
The record case lists personnel on each song in the album. Rice is always there on acoustic guitar and vocals as is Rick Richards on drums, but then on some there is a horn part with sax and trumpet and on another, a Hammond organ chimes in. On “Free At Last,” we find a fiddle and a dobro included. Bassist David Carroll’s name appears often, as does multi-instrumentalist Andre Moran, whose studio is the production location every time.
Rice recently appeared at Golden’s well-known country spot, Buffalo Rose, and is focusing on publicizing the release, since, as he puts it: “There are no geologist’s jobs or music gigs here right now ...”
He has enjoyed the beautiful Colorado Trail and been “fly fishing a lot.” He rides his bike at all times of year and will “stay positive, keep the eyes and ears open” and hope people will discover his music.
Rice’s favorites? “Memoirs of Our Youth” and “Ain’t Got a Dollar.”
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