The Steepwater Band formed in Chicago in 1998 ignited by a passion for the city's electric blues. The power trio who quickly progressed from covering Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters and John Lee Hooker to writing compelling originals has crafted a rock n' roll sound all their own. For over a decade the band has gigged relentlessly, performing nearly 125 shows per year and bringing their songbook of gritty English-blues, soulful boogie, and Delta-psychedelia to audiences across the States and abroad.
The creative energy of the band's live shows has earned them a loyal fan base and critical acclaim. Jeff Massey performs with a passion that can belie his virtuosity. His masterful guitar work, often featuring slide, has won the respect of many modern guitar luminaries. The rhythm section's rock-solid interplay provides a foundation which liberates Massey's lead work: Joe Winters swings beats with total command of his ferocity while Tod Bowers rolls out bass lines with loose-boogie sensibility and a knack for carrying the melody. Years of musical collaboration allow the band to play together tautly without sacrificing spontaneity.
The Steepwater Band has released four full-length records, and each album has garnered substantial radio airplay across the Midwest, including on Chicago's influential WXRT. Their songs have been placed in network television shows, a major motion picture, and a 3 year national ad campaign that debuted during the World Series. They have shared the stage with acts as diverse as Buddy Guy, Wilco, Gov't Mule, ZZ Top, Cheap Trick, Taj Mahal, Bon Jovi, Bad Company, Drive-By Truckers, and Heart. In 2005, the band made its European debut at the Azkena Rock Festival in Spain, and returned to Europe the following four years for club-and-festival tours.
It was a serendipitous meeting at a Black Crowes concert that brought friends Winters and Bowers together with Massey. A decade later in May ‘08, the trio found themselves in California recording with Grammy winner Marc Ford as producer, the musician widely regarded as the Black Crowes' finest guitarist and integral to their prime years. The band met Ford while sharing a bill at a festival in Spain in the summer of '07. A friendship was forged when they invited Ford to sit in on Neil Young's "Cortez the Killer.” Ford expressed interest in collaborating with the band shortly after producing the first two critically acclaimed albums from artist Ryan Bingham.
The 2008 LP ‘Grace and Melody’ was recorded in just nine days at the organic Compound Studios in Long Beach, California. With Ford's direction, the band dug deeper into the grit of their past records while exploring new influences that gave the record a fresh sound. From the top-down catchiness of "Lord Knows," to the extended guitar jam of "Waiting To Be Offended," to the hypnotic bounce of "Healer" and Lennonesque strum of "One Way Ride," this album runs the gamut of rock n’ roll roots with progressive style.
Taking what they learned from the ‘Grace’ sessions they entered the studio two years later and recorded quite possibly their most well-penned tune to date. Songwriting has long been a strength for The Steepwater Band, but it has never been more palpable than on the single THE STARS LOOK GOOD TONIGHT.