Robby LeDoux is a fresh new voice in country music. His self titled debut album is a solid newcomer to the genre. The album kicks off with Badge Of Honor, a twist on “getting’ the girl” it is a mid tempo toe tapper that stays with you long after the first listen. Another highlight is The Longest Mile with a decidedly Floyd Cramer piano riff to open things up. The song keeps one foot in throwback territory and another one firmly in today. One More Time Or Two is thumping country funk. The soaring country fiddles and banjo sit side by side with electric guitars and surprisingly enough, clavinet. And Gone Too Far, a personal favorite, reflects on the death of a friend “gone” before their time. It’s another example of the unique approach LeDoux brings to a lyric and to the album as a whole.
Hi, I'm Robby LeDoux. I have decided to write my own story here to give you insight into who I am from a first hand perspective. I hope you enjoy it!
I was born in Dallas, Texas and was raised listening to a whole range of music. My dad was a country music fan and wrote and played guitar. My early influences included Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson, Leon Russell and Ronnie Milsap among others. I loved listening to my dad play and sing and he did a mean Leon Russell imitation! Anyway, I gravitated to the piano in my grandmother’s house early on. I just fiddled around and wrote my own esoteric little tunes not really understanding theory or how a song is written. But I feel I had a pretty good grasp on what sounded good, at least that's what I thought at the time. My aunt was an employee of a large show production and lighting company named Showco. They pioneered all those crazy lights that move around with computers. You've seen them everywhere and the owner of the company who invented the technology did very well indeed! But, I digress... my aunt introduced me to many more influences such as Leon Russell, Billy Joel and Bad Company and a whole host of artists of that era. My favorite story about her is the one where she comes in after being on the road on the latest Leon Russell tour and handed me two new albums she thought I should hear. One was called simply Leon Russell. It had so many great songs like Shoot Out On The Plantation, A Song For You, etc. Just a classic, classic great album. Then she handed me another one that she was really excited about. She told me how this new guy on the scene was going to be the next really big thing and because I liked the piano and he played the piano, she thought this was a must hear for me the young buck. That album was simply titled Elton John. It was the first time I really tapped into how important the lyric is to a song and that was when I first started to dig much deeper into the craft of songwriting.
As the years rolled by I gravitated towards pop and rock after my parents divorced. My mom bought me my own piano and I began to write feverishly. I played live wherever I could, wrote a couple of jingles along the way, did studio work and basically lived the dysfunctional life of the classic starving musician. I had a lot of fun and it was hard and I took it very seriously and I constantly worked on my song craft. One night a good friend of my brother was playing at a bar in town. Her name is Edie Brickell. She had a really big hit back in the 90's and eventually married Paul Simon, one of my song-writing heroes. I asked her how he wrote. How did he do it? She gave me a nugget of information I carry with me to this day. It changed the way I wrote a song. She told me how meticulously he worked on a lyric. Sometimes spending months crafting one line of a song. I think I grew up as a songwriter after that night and I thank her for helping me mature as an artist even though she never even knew the impact she had just had on me.
I fell in love with a girl soon after. I chased her to New York City and convinced her to marry me. We have a beautiful, talented daughter. But, I digress again. Anyway, New York is tough. I worked at MTV for a while. I ended up scoring music for short films at Nickelodeon and eventually ended up mixing for television and composing for television. I didn’t do anything hugely groundbreaking, but it was fun for a while. It didn't take long for me to understand that sitting behind a desk with a client behind me barking out orders to bring that swoosh up in the mix or tuck that explosion a little more (which I never agreed with!!) just wasn't for me. No matter how much it paid. I didn't love it and didn't want to do something I basically hated doing.
Right around this time I learned that my dad had suddenly become gravely ill. It was a huge shock. We had drifted apart for years and it tore me up knowing that I hadn't told him that I loved him. On the plane ride back with my wife after his funeral she pulled out a notebook that she had found in his apartment while my brother, sister and I were at the hospital with our dad as he passed. In the notebook were a bunch of lyrics to songs that I had remembered him singing to us when we were little kids. On that flight back, I decided to write the album you are listening to right now. I wanted to do a country album in his honor and for the first time ever I wouldn't be writing for anyone but myself. I immersed myself in all the music he had played for us when we were little. Oh, the Merle Haggard was as fresh as yesterday. It brought me back to Ronnie Milsap and Conway Twittie. Along the way I discovered George Strait, George Jones and Kenny Chesney. Folks like Jamey Johnson and of course the Dixie Chicks. I started writing and couldn't stop. I finished this album of music and spent two years recording and mixing and listening and discovering new people along the way. I had found my muse and I am not looking back.
Well, that is a short version of my life. I hope it sheds a little light on where I'm coming from and I hope you enjoy this music. It is truly a labor of love.