Russell Taylor Ashby (vocals, guitar, mandolin, banjo, harmonica)
Scott Frigon (vocals, guitar, mandolin, harmonica)
Also features Jean LaCroix on Lead guitar, Violin, Cello and slide guitar
'Spinning Mule' is an anglo-american acoustic song-writing duo based in Rhode Island, USA. Formed in 2005, they have just celebrated their first eighteen months as a band and released a new CD consisting entirely of fresh, original songs. What a year it is proving to be.
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The band derives its name from Samuel Crompton’s invention, which changed the whole complexion of the world of textile manufacture during the eighteenth century industrial revolution in England. The band had decided originally to avoid long, arduous discussions regarding the name they would adopt and to allow their future band name to arrive naturally or even by happy accident.
And that is exactly what happened. Russell had been telling Scott about Bolton, the historically famous town in England where he had lived for many years, and happened to mention that it had been the birthplace of Crompton and ultimately of the ‘Spinning Mule’.
As soon as the name was mentioned, Scott repeated it a few times aloud before saying that the name of the band had finally arrived, albeit serendipitously, but nevertheless in the exact manner they had wanted it to come.
'Spinning Mule’ music is difficult to categorize because it draws its roots from so many varied sources: folk, jazz, blues, rock to mention just a few. This is hardly surprising if you consider the backgrounds and highly individual musical influences of each member of ‘Spinning Mule’.
Scott Frigon whose major influences and tastes include Neil Young, Crosby Still and Nash, and many classic British and American rock bands provides the heartbeat to ‘Spinning Mule’. His steady rhythms and licks provide the basis and foundation for Russell to build on and interweave their two distinctly different styles.
Russell Taylor Ashby brings something different again to ‘Spinning Mule’. He is essentially from the English contemporary folk stable, greatly influenced by Bert Jansch and John Renbourne, but has been part of many different musical genres over the years: heavy rock, punk, folk, country. Russell is a finger picker and his meticulous style blends perfectly with Scott's rhythms. Russell also brings mandolin, banjo and harmonica to the band, providing a more rustic dimension to the overall sound.
So this is ‘Spinning Mule’………an acoustic rock band? Yes…..but also a sort of jazzy, folky, country sounding band……..with a dash of swing……upbeat and melodic. Actually, maybe it is better just to create a new category of music….'Mule Music'.