Roderick Newport started his interest in music at an early age. He grew up in the burbs of Cincinnati Ohio but spent most of his childhood years visiting his grandparents in Tennessee. He remembers listening to his dad, uncle and grandpa playing bluegrass and country late into the night while other family members would sing and play along. He was recalled to say later, that some of those nights he would swear the crickets and other mountain creatures would chime in with a harmony of their own.
What caught his ear most of all was the lonesome cry of his grandpa’s fiddle. “Man he could make that thing sing” Roderick would say. So at a very young age Roderick began taking violin at school where he would play most of his school years in the schools’ orchestra.
During his preteen years Roderick also became interested in guitar. “I don’t really remember ever learning the guitar” Roderick would say, “Just seems like I always knew how to play the basics”. During these years he would play in church with his dad and other family members. This is where he first met Paul Thompson who showed him a two fingered picking style that Roderick still uses to this day.
As most teenagers do, Roderick discovered rock-n-roll. He loved Elvis and Kiss and soon wanted to try his hand at rock guitar. “With my country roots it was hard for me to play that rock style, but I had to learn.” He kept playing in church through most of his teen years and even played in a southern gospel band The Wesley Family Singers. He played this way until he was about 19.
Roderick soon started searching for a new direction he wanted to play in a rock band but wasn’t sure where to start, he found his answer in the newspaper wanted section where a Ken Rosario was looking to form a new band. Roderick soon paired with Ken and began Teezer. Here he was able to play all of those great rock songs he had heard growing up but also started writing his own songs. Now the boys were ready to rock accept right before their debut gig they had heard there was another band called Teezer in town , so they changed there name to Trick Or Treat. Roderick played successfully with Trick Or Treat for many years, playing headliners and opening for major acts.
After Trick Or Treat had run its course, Roderick soon found himself without any gigs so he began playing in local VFW halls and American Legions with Mike Woo and the Vibrations, here he would play for a couple of years keeping up on his chops.
At this point “young country” was becoming big. Roderick knew that he could make something of it. So he called up his partner from Trick Or Treat, Ken and began Due South. Roderick played in Due South for several years until once again he needed another gig. He then teamed up with The Hollow, and was very successful with a song on the international charts and opening for major country artists.
Roderick soon met Dennis Conover who owned a recording studio in downtown Cincinnati. Dennis had heard Roderick singing backups and encouraged him to come down and record some lead vocal tracks. “Know one ever encouraged me to sing lead before” Roderick once said. Soon Roderick and Dennis along with their friend and drummer Greg Skinner formed Mister Wilson. Roderick played this way until about 2004 when he decided to call it quits for awhile.
It didn’t take long for Roderick to get tired of not playing so he started recording, playing all the instruments himself and doing all of the vocals, remembering all of the styles he had learned in the past, from his dad’s great singing voice to his grandpa’s fiddle, the rock-n-roll he loved as a kid and the recording techniques he had learned from his friend Dennis. Roderick soon had a group of songs he was pleased with, and with a little help from his friend Kyle Caldwell who played bass on two of his songs Roderick’s first debut album Back Home was here. From the hard rocking sounds of “Take From You” to the sometimes haunting vocals of “Faces” this new cd will be sure to take you “Back Home” no matter where you are from.