Remains of Eden
'I didn't start writing until halfway through my freshman year of college,' says singer/songwriter Russ Wills. 'I had tried long before that, but everything ended up sounding really corny. Then one night when I was half asleep this verse just popped into my head. I thought, 'wow, that's pretty cool, hope I remember it in the morning...'' Instead of falling back to sleep, though, Russ got up and wrote down the verse; the rest of the song, he says, just flowed naturally as he wrote. That one song was enough to start him on more than ten years of songwriting. Russ did not always play the folk/rock style he enjoys today. He started out by playing rhythm guitar for heavy metal bands late in high school. Within a couple years he became fascinated by the guitar playing of acoustic artists like Phil Keaggy and Michael Hedges. These artists inspired him to learn a great deal about the acoustic guitar, and today Russ plays almost exclusively acoustic music. His biggest influences are Phil Keaggy, Dave Matthews, Jars of Clay, and Rusted Root. Despite his late start, Russ has been playing for well over ten years and receives great complements even from established musicians. He has played for a large number of coffee houses, churches, and colleges in the NY/NJ/PA area and has been featured in various radio interviews. In addition to his 'unplugged' cassette Before The Fall and his new CD Remains of Eden, Russ has performed live and in the studio for various artists, including his own band 'Exit8'. Russ currently performs as a solo artist and plans to begin playing with a band again in the near future. Although Russ classifies himself in the 'folk/rock' genre, his music has a rich collection of influences. When asked what kind of music he plays, his typical answer is 'sort of an Acoustic Folk/Rock sound with a touch of an Alternative edge...' Whatever you call it, Russ's music and guitar playing are sure to entertain.