Band of the Day: Rusty Shipp

What is nautical rock? Rusty Shipp are here to explain.

Simple things first – where are you guys from? 

Russ and Eli are both from the D.C. area in Virginia, AJ is from Indiana, and Speedy comes from West Tennessee. 

How did you meet?


How long have you been playing as a band? 

Russ T. Shipp formed the band about 6 years ago after moving to Nashville, TN from the Washington, D.C. area. 

Before you get sick of being asked… where does the band name come from? 

It’s actually reflective of the type of music we write, where we do a lot of under water ambient and grungy type of sounds and happened to also coincide perfectly with Russ T. Shipp’s name.  

What are your influences?

Rush, Coheed and Cambria, Lotus, Children of Bodom, Metallica, The Beatles, Alice in Chains, Nirvana, DC Talk, The Beach Boys, MxPx and Dick Dale. 

Describe your music. What makes you unique?

We create nautical rock and roll.  That means it needs to sound oceanic, ambient, atmospheric and nautical.  There’s a lot of surf beats at times mixed with reverb on the guitars and vocals. It’s as if Nirvana were playing a Beach Boys song after listening to The Dark Side of the Moon

Do you have any particular lyrical themes?  

While most of our songs are obviously nautical in imagery (particularly are more recent songs), they have an underlying, deeper, philosophical message behind them. A lot of songs talk about the struggle and tension of existence (fear of the unknown, fear of death, struggles with addiction), but they also have a glimmer of hope in them — not denying that the struggles are real, but also recognising that there is a hope just as present and real as those struggles. 

What’s your live show like? How many shows have you played?  

We’ve been told people enjoy our live show even more than our records because you can see the energy behind the songs acted out. We like to have fun and incorporate beach balls flying around at festivals, and indoor show lights, smoke and an ominous kind of feel to match some of the feelings of being on an actual ship sailing the open waters. 

What’s the wildest thing you’ve seen or done at a live show?  

We once played a show in Clarksville, TN where the last act consisted of a girl lying down on the stage and screaming into a microphone for almost 45 minutes straight while the band just played whatever they wanted.  It was a little intense. 

What kit do you use / guitars do you play / etc.? 

AJ is endorsed by Outlaw Drums and plays an all cypress kit from them, Rusty plays a Fender Strat, Eli plays a Gibson Flying V, and Speedy plays a Fender P bass and an Ibanez Talman TB30.

What, if anything, are you plugging/promoting at the moment?  

Currently we are proud to be promoting our first single in two years, “Breaking Waves” off our forthcoming album Liquid Exorcist. The single and video both were released July 18th and viewers can check it out (below).

What are your plans for 2019?  

We’ve got a lot of awesome things coming down the pike. There will be more new music on the horizon for our fans as well as hitting the road and playing numerous shows. To stay updated on our upcoming releases and shows please follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and sign up to be a Shippmate at our website so you can get access to videos and music before the public. 

If you were second on a three-band bill, which band would you love to be supporting and which band would you choose to open for you? A chance to plug someone you’ve toured with, or a mate’s band we’ve not heard of before!  

We would love to be on a bill with Thrice headlining, then Rusty Shipp and have our friends in Them Fixes open the show.  That’d be a very energetic show.

Rusty Shipp: official | facebook | twitter | instagram | youtube

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