One day Too Human met Studio Stu at WDST-FM in Woodstock, NY. They took one look at Stu and his washtub bass and knew it would be a blast to play with him. Stu plays his self-designed (with the help of luthier, Lou Mancuso) Studivarious washtub bass with a free wheeling, swinging style that allowed him to fit right in. They share many traits - humor, love of music, and love of the outrageous. Every show swings musically and the comraderie and humor they share pours out into the audience. The concert at the Endicott Performing Arts Center was recorded live. The best tracks made it onto this live CD.
Too Human's Ellen and Roger have had music in their lives from a very early age. Over the years they both explored different musical genres and instruments, but what remained constant was singing, the song and the passion.
They eventually became professional songwriters in Los Angeles, on staff with publishing giant Warner/Chappell Music, where they had their songs recorded by a broad spectrum of recording artists including Cher, Pat Benatar, Teddy Pendergrass, Martha Davis, Angela Bofill, Anne Murray, and Nancy Wilson. When they moved back east and became Too Human, with Ellen on guitar, keyboards, and vocals and Roger on percussion, keyboards, and vocals, and the occasional addition of Studio Stu, their diverse musical influences merged to create a sound that has been described as edgy, blues/jazz influenced contemporary acoustic. Their writing style is personal, topical and relevant in the singer/songwriter tradition, with gritty, heartfelt vocals, great harmonies and driving rhythms. They've been known to write funny and entertaining new songs on the spot about or with audience members. Whether performing breezy, jazzy, toe tapping swing or a bluesy, heartfelt ballad, their music will move you. As one reviewer has said, "Singing with passion and joy ... Too Human put smiles on our faces." Ellen's voice combines earthiness with sensuality, innocence, and passion. Roger's unusual percussion style and backing vocals complement her perfectly. In performance they are totally in sync with each other, creating a strong and intimate atmosphere.
They perform regularly in the East (The Kennedy Center in Washington, DC, The Bottom Line in New York, The Tin Angel in Philadelphia, Caffe Lena in Saratoga Springs, to name a few), and at schools, libraries, coffeehouses, clubs, civic concert series and outdoor venues such as festivals (NACA Showcase and Falcon Ridge Folk Festival New Artist Showcase), 4-H fairs and crafts fairs. They've opened for 10,000 Maniacs, Janis Ian, Martin Sexton, Livingston Taylor, Garnet Rogers, Kenny Rankin, Kim & Reggie Harris, Susan Werner, Jack Williams, Les Sampou, and Dave Mallett, and have shared the stage with David Amram, Dave's True Story, Bill Parsons, Sloan Wainwright, and Wishing Chair.
They have appeared live as featured artists on WFUV with Meg Griffin and John Platt, WXPN with Gene Shay, WRPI with Sonny Ochs, WCUW with Richard Fox, WKZE with Frank Matheis, WVIA with George Graham, WWUH with Ed McKeon, WPKN with Mike Horyczun and Pam Smith, WHUS with Susan Forbes Hanson and John Sloan, and many others.
Their latest studio CD, True, is getting played on radio stations across the country and a track from True, "New Surrender," is included on the latest compilation CD from the Garland Appeal. The Garland Appeal was founded with the support of Sir Paul McCartney to honor Linda McCartney and to raise funds for cancer research. This CD, entitled Familiar Mysteries, contains 20 songs contributed by independent artists from across the US. The CD is a soundscape of hope, healing, and love.
"I had the pleasure of attending your song-writing seminar held at Shenandoah U. this past fall; you were all so helpful to the end of honing the craft of song-writing--not to mention sharing your fantastic music-- and you made the format as fun, interesting and comfortable as it could have been. Thanks for doing what you do, and doing it with excellence! You threw sun and water on musical seeds just waitin' to sprout...THANK YOU!" Student, Shenendoah University, Winchester, VA
"Ellen and Roger live life with their hearts, eyes, and minds wide-open. The many interesting experiences they've had have spawned a huge repertoire of smart, well-crafted, and immediately accessible songs. Everything they sing sounds like an old standard--except your hearing it for the first time! The audience at Caffe Lena loved their debut performance." Sarah Craig, Manager, Caffe Lena