A Civilized Superhero

Russ Barnes is an exquisite anomaly. He is a brother whose very presence causes a shift in the paradigm because while others work on the exterior to attract attention to self, Russ uses his sizeable stature to draw us in to the light. He is a powerful juxtaposition of brains, brawn, and brotherhood, a civilized superhero whose primary power is his instrument - part blaring horn, part soothing sitar - which he uses with the love and purpose of a musical modern-day Robin Hood, taking from the Infinite and giving to the poor of spirit.


Focused on His Purpose

This is not a tale of Stevie Wonder-inspired vocals, though they were brewed in the same cauldron that birthed such manna as Songs In The Key of Life. This is not a comparative analysis of his similarities to Richie Havens and Ben Harper and Bill Withers, though they all share the power to tell tales of struggle and simplicity from a place called truth. This is the story of a man who is focused on his purpose and lives in it. Every day is purposeful, as is every song on his debut release.

A Different Kind of Artist

Barnes is not a completely new presence to the industry. Anyone who has experienced Rachelle Ferrell live has melted as Russ has stepped in and performed the Will Downing-duet "Nothing Has Ever Felt Like This" with his sister and torn the place to pieces. Anyone who has experienced this live offering has also noted not only the vocal strength of Russ Barnes, but his considerable frame, honed and sculptured with years of discipline and proving the perfect presence to let everyone know that his physical role was to protect his sister. When audiences started to notice Russ' ascension to the stage, they also unleashed their desires to see what was behind the man of mystery. "We did a show in L.A. and the first comment was 'Take your shirt off!' and I thought 'wow!'" But in his eloquent style, Barnes said to the adoring sistah in the audience, "You are a Queen and you deserve much higher and better than that!" A statement that brought cheers and appreciation from a crowd that immediately realized that it was being offered a different kind of artist, one who not only appreciated his audience but their intellect as well. - Rev. Kevin Taylor

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