May 21, 2019
I'm excited for a full schedule of gigs coming up this summer!
There are two very cool gigs coming up in the next few weeks.
MEMORIAL DAY (May 27th) @ Christy's Landing w/ The Moon Gypsies! 2-6pm.
I've been doing this gig for 25 years now and it's one of my all time favorites.
Join us for a great afternoon on the western shores of Lake Waubesa!
The MAMA AWARDS Show at The Capital Brewery on June 9th.
Proud to be playing my patriotic protest song,
America (Oh Say Can You See) as one of the featured
artists on this night. If you're a fan of Madison music, there's
no better evening than this to showcase our city's great musical culture.
All proceeds go directly to the MAMA mission of putting instruments in the hands of kids.
Hope you can make it.
Apr 3, 2019
I'm honored to be a finalist for Folk/Americana Song of the Year In the
Madison Area Music Awards for my song America(Oh Say Can You See).
Lots of wonderful competition in this category, so I'm in good company.
Please take the time to vote at www.themamas.org. Your $5 donation to
vote, allows us to help fund music programs for kids. Oh, and I'm also in
the running for harmonica instrumentalist of the year again. Whoa, real
harp players are up for this award too!
Feb 9, 2019
I'm happy to have a whole lot of gigs this year, mostly solo, and a few cool
shows with The Moon Gypsies! Also I'm up for a number of Madison Area Music Awards including
Best Americana/folk song and Best video for my patriotic protest song,
America (Oh Say Can You See) and also, Best unique song for "The Blessing Song".
Give a listen on my song page! Other nominations are for Male Vocalist, Acoustic Guitar
and again harmonica. Please go to http://www.themamas.org to vote. It's also
a great way to catch up on all the great music coming out of Madison.
Hope to see you Hanging Out in Barland!
Feb 9, 2019
Check out Robert J's new patriotic protest song and video,
America (Oh Say Can You See) "is a song that not only sounds American, but one
that does its best to illustrate what truly is American - a spirit of patriotic dissent."
Tom Whitcomb - Isthmus.com
"I suspect Woody Guthrie would approve." - Doug Moe - Madison Magazine
May 17, 2018
Here it is folks, my patriotic protest song. America (Oh Say Can You See)!
Check it out on Youtube at .........
And you can buy the song right here on my song page on this site or get it
on iTunes and most all the other digital formats!
Thanks for listening!
May 30, 2018
Thanks Tom Whitcomb and the Isthmus for this article about America (Oh Say Can You See)
May 22, 2018
Madison Magazine's Doug Moe's article about Robert J. and America (Oh Say Can You See)
May 26, 2018
Check out the Local Sounds article by Rick Tvedt
May 1, 2018
Woody Guthrie once said, "It is a folk singer's job to comfort disturbed people and to
disturb comfortable people." With that in mind, I look forward to the release of
my Patriotic Protest Song! America, (Oh Say Can You See). To be released May, 2018.
SONG RELEASE - Memorial Day 2018
VIDEO RELEASE - Memorial Day 2018
Mar 28, 2018
I'm excited to be putting the finishing touches on my Patriotic Protest Song,
"America (Oh Say Can You See). We'll be mixing and finishing the video in
April and plan to launch the song on May 1st! .....May Day, May Day!
Thanks to all of you at my shows who have responded so positively to this song.
Your encouragement and enthusiasm towards it's message gives me hope for our
Jan 10, 2018
Another new year is upon us and I'm excited to be recording new
material for release later this year. I'm also playing a lot of solo gigs
throughout Wisconsin. Please check out my "shows" page for a current list.
And, I've been working hard and am excited for our Mama Cares Winter Ball coming
up on Feb, 17th at The High Noon Saloon. This is a benefit to help Madison area
musicians in their time of need. This year's fundraiser features some great bands,
The Rousers, Honor Among Thieves and The Lower 5th.
Please go to www.themamas.org/mamacares for more info about our
program and the Winter Ball. Please mark it on your calendar and support this
Happy New Year!
Oct 23, 2017
I've got a lot of shows this fall at a lot of great places. I'm thankful for the chance to
play so much music for y'all.
Aside from my weekly Wednesday Night gig at The Come Back In in Madison, I'll be
playing all around the surrounding area. Please check out my "Shows" page for a
One the MAMA CARES front, please join us at Mr. Roberts in Madison for a fundraiser
on Nov. 11th featuring, The Lower 5th, Sam Ness and yours truly.
For you Moon Gypsies fans, the MG trio will get together for a special THANKSGIVING
EVE celebration at The CBI on November 22nd at 7:30PM. Should be a great way to start out
the holiday season!
Hope to see you "hanging out in barland"!
Aug 16, 2017
Welcome to the website! I haven't kept it up much over the last couple of years.
I've found that working 2 full time jobs (one in a factory and the other playing music)
has left me with neither time nor energy to keep it all together. Now that my factory
job is behind me, I hope to keep you a little more up to date.
I'm excited to spend my days this fall recording a couple of new CDs! There's over
20 songs I'd like to put down and I hope to have something released by the end of 2017.
I've got a lot of solo gigs and a few cool Moon Gypsies shows coming up this fall. Please
check out my "shows" page for more details. Hope to see you "Hanging Out In Barland"!
Feb 12, 2016
I'm excited to say our new program, MAMA CARES is taking off this year.
MAMA CARES was created through the MAMAs (Madison Area Music
Association) to help local Madison musicians in their time of need.
After the huge support shown to our family after our son Jacy's emergency
brain surgery, we felt we wanted to help pay it forward to help others
in their time of need.
For more info, PLEASE CHECK OUT THIS ARTICLE! http://magazine.localsounds.org/2016/02/01/in-times-of-need-mama-cares-helps-out-local-musicians-and-their-families/
Jun 14, 2015
I've just been told that I will be honored at this year's MAMA Awards
show for a Legacy Award for Songwriting. This is only the second year
for this award and I'm so grateful for being recognized!
Apr 9, 2015
Music Community Rallies For Family Of Robert J; Benefit Scheduled For April 19th at The
High Noon Saloon. 6-19PM.
Local Sounds Magazine
Jan 15, 2015
I want to thank everyone who has sent their love and support
to me and my family while my son, Jacy has been dealing with
recovery from emergency brain surgery. Trying times bring
out the best in people and we feel the love being sent our way.
Thanks again and all the best to you. Onward!
Mar 15, 2014
I did not see this coming, but I appreciate the nod of being nominated
for Folk Artist of the Year for the Wisconsin Area Music Industry. I believe you
can check out the other nominees and vote at www.wamimusic.com.
Aug 30, 2013
Hey Folks, Due to problems with noise restrictions over at Christy's Landing, they can no longer have outdoor music this season. Therefore we have been cancelled for playing this Labor Day. Too bad as we were looking forward to playing together again and doing our annual thang. Anyway, enjoy your Labor Day Weekend and all the best. RJ
Jun 1, 2013
Greetings Music Lovers of all ages,
I'd like to invite you to check out our new children's series about
Elephant Gerald and his krewe of jazz and blues playing sidekicks.
My wife, Jill and I, along with our artist, Glenn Fuller and the rest
of our EG team, have been developing the whole concept for about
6 years now and we're finally to the point of wanting to share Elephant
Gerald with you all. We've been writing stories and music and we
are now developing an animated short film as well. Someday we'd
like Elephant Gerald to become a TV show.
Here's three things you can do to get connected and help spread the word.
1. Like us on Facebook : https://www.facebook.com/TheElephantGeraldShow?ref=ts&fref=ts
The Elephant Gerald Show page is now up and we're looking to have you for a friend.
2. Read our Blog: http://elephantgeraldadventures.blogspot.com/
Starting today and every Sunday, we'll be adding stories for you to read and share with your kids.
3. Check out our Website : http://www.theelephantgeraldshow.com/
Here you can listen to the Elephant Gerald theme song and That's Where Your Mojo Is.
Also, you can get the full picture of what we're planning to do.
Dec 3, 2012
My band The Rowdy Prairie Dogs are taking the winter off and I'll be playing solo shows in and around the Madison area for the winter. Look for a new and improved version of the band for next summer's shows.
Sep 27, 2012
*****Oct 11 2012 Madison, Wisconsin - The Brink - Billy Eli with Robert J. - 8:00PM*****
Two Americana singer/songwriter's, one from the North and one from the South, pair up for a night of Americana Music. A percentage of the proceeds go to two charities benefiting Autism and the Heart Association.
Billy Eli from Austin, Texas -
Billy Eli plays country that rocks and rock that's country, delivering songs that are vivid slices of real life lived to the fullest and chased down with a stiff shot of whiskey. With a style that's rooted in his small town Southeast Texas origins that transcends the Lone Star State to achieve an international reach, the Austin, TX-based singer and songwriter has been compared by critics to such stellar American music artists as Tom Petty, Steve Earle, John Prine and John Mellencamp, to name a few. And like them, Eli's music bears an indelible trademark that's all his own, nimbly riding the fulcrum where rock and country converge, and singing with fervent heart and soul about the range of human experience from sin to salvation.
Robert J. from Madison, WI -
Robert J. has been a mainstay in the Wisconsin music scene ever since releasing his first record Boys Town in 1986. He has won the Wisconsin Male Vocalist of the year, 8 MAMA Awards and songwriting awards including the Billboard Song Contest for his tune, "A Million Miles Away". Robert has had success with his bands, Boystown, The Moon Gypsies and currently, with his Bluesy Americana band, The Rowdy Prairie Dogs. In April of 2008, Robert released 2 CDs on the same day. "A Beautiful Blur" is a AAA/singer/songwriter record and "The Revenge of the Rowdy Prairie Dogs" is an Americana/Country-rock CD. The RPD Cd wound up at Americana radio where it reached #14 on the Euro-Americana chart and #15 on the Roots Rock Chart in America. Over the years Robert J. has shared the stage with many well known artists including, The Beach Boys, The Subdudes, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Delbert McClinton, LeAnn Rimes, John Eddie and Paul Thorn.
Jul 17, 2012
I was just handed a last minute solo show at The Silver Eagle Bar & Grill in Monona for this Saturday night, July 21st. 9PM until midnight. This is my first time in at this well known establishment, so come on down and tip a few!
Hope to see you there. rj
Mar 29, 2012
My dixieland song, "That's Where Your Mojo Is" has been nominated for JAZZ Song of the Year in the MAMA awards. I recorded this song in New Orleans last year with some great studio musicians. It's one of a new crop of songs I've been writing for The Elephant Gerald Show, a children's animated TV show that my wife and I have been working on for almost 5 years now. Check it out on my song page and if you want to vote for the MAMA Awards, there is a $5 voting fee which goes directly to putting instruments in the hands of needy children.
Mar 29, 2012
Nov 13, 2010
Just got home from my show with LeAnn Rimes in
Sheboygan, on the beautiful shores of Lake Michigan, on the eastern edge of my
adopted home state of Wisconsin. Well, hey hey, my my, I gotta say...it was a
wonderful night! The Weill Center for the Performing Arts is an amazing,
historic, restored theater ...and, it had some 900 people who made me feel so
at home and comfortable that they had to drag me off the stage! And then, the
"BONUS".... getting to hear and see LeAnn Rimes from out front and from backstage! I tell you, in case you didn't already know, this young upstart has such an incredible voice that at times it had the timbre and the sound of a trumpet. WOW, it don't get much better than this!
For me, it was.......seriously priceless!
Oct 19, 2010
ON NOVEMBER 12TH, Robert J. will be playing a show with the one and only LeAnn Rimes at the Weill Center for the Performing Arts in Sheboygan, Wisconsin.
LeAnn Rimes w/ special guest Robert J.
Weill Center for the Performing Arts
Fri, Nov 12, 2010 07:30 PM.
For Tickets http://www.ticketmaster.com/event/070044F4D1A39D0F?artistid=779682&majorcatid=10001&minorcatid=2
Sep 30, 2010
The Rowdy Prairie Dogs are opening for one of the best
singer/songwriters in the biz today.......PAUL THORN.
Great lyricist and story teller, great southern fried
grooves (ala Little Feat), this guy from Tupelo, Misssissippi
will blow you away with his funky brand of...AMERICANA!
October 13th, 2010, 8PM. The High Noon Saloon, Madison, Wisconsin!
Jul 1, 2010
On July 31st The RPDs will be opening for New Jersey singer/songwriter, JOHN EDDIE at The High Noon Saloon. 9PM
May 21, 2010
The RPDs took home the MAMA award for Performer of the Year in the Country category. Thanks for voting for us and congratulations to all the MAMA winners and nominees.
Apr 19, 2010
Apr 16, 2010
The Rowdy Prairie Dogs receive 3 MAMA Nominations Posted: Apr 7, 2010
The MAMA award nominations are in and The RPDs are nominated in
Folk/Americana Performer of the Year
Country/Bluegrass Performer of the Year
Folk/Americana Song of the Year for "Hanging Out In Barland".
Vote for your favorite Madison bands by going to this link
http://www.themamas.org There is a $5 voting charge
and all money goes directly to putting instruments in the hands of
Mar 10, 2010
The Rowdy Prairie Dogs have been nominated for a second straight year for
Americana Band of the Year in the Wisconsin Area Music Industry Awards.
Dec 15, 2009
Every Wednesday night at Talula's -
Robert J. & friends - 8:00PM until 11:00PM
2 for 1 Wednesdays - No cover! .......Yup!
Twice the bang for your buck!!
***That's right, 2 for 1 on rails and on select beers!
Every Friday Evening at Ruth's Chris Steak House
Robert J. - solo - Early show from 6- 9:00PM.
Aug 27, 2009
Robert recently sat down with Andy Ziehli from The Americana
Gazette to talk about The Rowdy Prairie Dogs and his life in
music. Andy states, "Robert J. is a songwriters songwriter.
A man that can turn a phrase into a lyrical opus. He is
Southern Wisconsins songwriting poet laureate."
Read the full interview on page 28 of this months Americana Gazette at
Mar 30, 2009
The Rowdy Prairie Dogs have been nominated for 3 Madison
Area Music Awards for Best Country/Bluegrass Performer,
Best Country/Bluegrass song for "That's Why" and our drummer, Ron Granberg
is nominated for best drummer. You can vote for
all your favorite Madison music at www.themamas.org You
don't have to live in Madison to vote. There is a $5 charge to
vote but that money goes directly to putting music in the
hands of kids.
Mar 30, 2009
The Rowdy Prairie Dogs pick up 2 Wisconsin Area Music Industry
Nominations for Best New Artist and for Best Americana Band.
To see a list of all nominees, go to www.wamimusic.com.
Nov 24, 2008
The Revenge of the Rowdy Prairie Dogs has been named
a finalist in the 8th annual Independent Music Awards
for best Alt.Country Album. And out of all the bands worldwide,
another Madison band, The Blueheels has been nominated to
the same category. Go Madison!
You can go and vote for your favorites at.......
Album Finalists : 8th Annual Independent Music Awards
Aug 25, 2008
From the very first moment I got to New Orleans
I felt at home there. On my first afternoon in town,
I walked through the French Quarter and before I left,
I had played on Bourbon Street in a funky little place
called the Funky Pirate. My thanks to Mark Penton for
getting me up on his stage and letting me do a few tunes.
On Friday night, I did my showcase at The Kerry Irish Pub.
Great place and great people! Thanks to Chip Wilson for
helping with the sound and thanks to Doris for the
opportunity. And Saturday night, I got to do another
solo show at The Blue Nile on Frenchman
Street before a great Americana band from Shreveport, LA
by the name of Dirtfoot. Check them out! It was great
to hang out with Pete Knapp from Shut Eye Records and
the whole staff from SJK Public Relations, not to mention
enjoying all the food and music and soul and spirit
that the Big Easy had to offer.
Let the Good Times Roll!!!!!!!!
Aug 8, 2008
My thanks to all our friends and family who gave us
such a warm welcome throughout Colorado. KBUT, KDNK
and KRFC .....Thanks for letting me come in and
play some new songs and spin some of the songs off
the new CDs!
Aug 8, 2008
The Revenge of the Rowdy Prairie Dogs is still moving up and hanging on!
Jul 15, 2008
The 3rd week of radio and The Rowdy Prairie Dogs are at #25!!!!!!
Jul 4, 2008
The Revenge of the Rowdy Prairie Dogs reaches #36 on the Roots rock chart
after only one week!
Jul 3, 2008
After only 1 week of radio promotion "The Revenge
of the Rowdy Prairie Dogs" CD has charted at #19 on
the Euro-Americana Chart. http://home.hetnet.nl/~noci48/
Jun 19, 2008
The Rowdy Prairie Dogs have some great gigs coming up inlcuding.....
June 21 - in Waupaca opening for the New Riders of the Purple Sage.
July 5 - Riverfront Rendezvous -Stevens Point Fireworks display.
July 6 - Summerfest in Milwaukee
JUST ADDED - July 13 - Opening for THE BODEANS in Osh Kosh.
For more details and other upcoming Robert J. solo shows go to
the GIGS page
Jun 19, 2008
It was an honor to be at the Steel Bridge Song Festival in
Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin last weekend. My thanks to pat mAcdonald
and everyone who made this wonderful event happen. I got to sing on
stage for the finale with Jackson Browne(one of my all time
songwriting heroes) along with all the talented musicians
and songwriters involved with the Fest. It's going to happen
again next year so put the 2nd week of June on your calendars
and come to one of the neatest little towns on any of the
Great Lakes and enjoy the music. The Rowdy Prairie Dogs
played an inspired showcase to a packed house at the Fest and
I wound up jamming with Freedy Johnson until way too
late or ..way too early as the case may be.
YOU GOT TO LOVE THE MUSIC!
May 22, 2008
- AMERICANA RADIO RELEASE DATE - June 23.
PopBomb Records is partnering with Shut Eye Records
to promote "The Revenge of the Rowdy Prairie Dogs"
worldwide to Americana Radio! The Radio Campaign
will begin going for adds on June 23, 2008 and
sent to 320 stations in the U.S., Canada and Europe!
May 12, 2008
The Madison Area Music Awards last Saturday at The Barrymore Theater
will be a night to remember for the rest of my life. Thank you
to all the fans and to my music peers who voted for "A Beautiful Blur"
and the "Rowdy Prairie Dogs" songs and CDS. Thank you! Thank you!
Thank you! Again I want to thank all the musicians who played on
these records and I want to officially apologize to Mike Zirkel and
Smart Studios for leaving them out of my special thanks. I will
be naming my next born child Mike Zirkel Conaway and my next CD
will be titled, The Revenge of Mike Zirkel for the amazing contributions
Mike has made to my recorded life. Thank you Mike Zirkel!
I also want to thank Kenny Koeppler at
The Sound Garden for his contribution to these recordings.
And ............The awards are:
Rock Album of the Year
"A Beautiful Blur"
Country/Bluegrass Album of the Year
"The Revenge of The Rowdy Prairie Dogs"
Country/Bluegrass Song of the Year
Loved Like That - The Rowdy Prairie Dogs
Folk/Americana Song of the Year
Home Movies - The Rowdy Prairie Dogs
Pop Song of the Year
A Room With A View - Robert J.
Male Vocalist of the Year
Link to Madison Magazine Interview with Robert J. about MAMAs 2008
Apr 8, 2008
Robert J. is nominated for his new PopBomb Records releases,
"A Beautiful Blur" and "The Revenge of the Rowdy Prairie Dogs"!
The Nominations are...
A Beautiful Blur...Rock Album of the year.
The Revenge of the Rowdy Prairie Dogs...Country/Bluegrass
Album of the year.
Loved Like That...Country song of the year.
A Room With A View... Pop song of the year.
Home Movies... Folk/Americana song of the year.
Male Vocalist - Robert J.
Instrumentalist - Robert J.
To vote for your favorite MAMA nominees (And it is an honor to
be nominated with such a wonderful pool of Madison area
songwriters) Go to www.themamas.org.
There will be a $5 donation charge to vote, but your money goes
directly to fund kids music programs. Plus, you'll enjoy the music!!
Apr 8, 2008
Well it's a great ride!
A great night at The Brink for my CD release party.
(To all of you who were there...Thank you, I had a blast!)
A new band that's rocking and an old band that
is still one big happy family. Two songs in the
movie "Madison" which debuted last weekend at the
Wisconsin Film Fest. 7 nominations for MAMA awards
for "A Beautiful Blur" and "The Revenge of the Rowdy
Prairie Dogs"!!!!!!! 22 pounds lost! A strong heart.
An amazing family! And........a whole new crop
of songs that I hope to record and share with you soon!
Jan 17, 2008
Thanks to all of you who have reached out to me over the past months
since my heart attack. I feel both amazed and blessed to have such
a wonderful family and so many true friends who have offered
me so much encouragement through this down time! I am just beginning
to feel my energy returning and life getting back to it's typical
hectic pace. But, life is different now, or at least I am.
The meanings of certain concepts seem in a way, so much more
pure now. Things like appreciation, happiness, faith, commitment,
love, family, health, humility, fear, hope, tolerance, forgiveness
and compassion have filled this broken heart and enabled me to
become a healthier, happier, more at peace version of my former self.
Life has always been about change and adapting to it. After all, isn't
surviving what we the living do? This year my life is rich with
simple lessons, blessed with family and friends and open to
the possibilities that come to someone who has been given a
Peace and Happiness for a Heart Healthy New Year! Robert J.
Jan 17, 2008
Dec 6, 2007
For those who couldn't make the Otis Redding Tribute.
Here's a link to Storybridge.TV.com with a news report about the event.
Special thanks to Katy Sai for doing this report!
Dec 1, 2007
The front page article by columnist Doug Moe from November 29th.
Here's to second chances!!!!!!
Musician Gets a Second Chance at Life!
Nov 19, 2007
I thought I should let you know that my Cd Release party on December 8th at The Brink will have to be postponed until sometime in the new year. A little over a week ago, on November 10th, I had a heart attack while raking leaves in my backyard and had to have emergency surgery where they put two stints in my right coronary artery. Because we got to the hospital fast and because of the amazing staff at St. Marys, they had me in the operating room within minutes and the damage to my heart muscle looks like it will be minimal. Over the next 6 weeks, I will be undertaking rehab to strengthen my heart and it is going to take some time to get back to full strength. But, hopefully I will be back!
Ive dreamed of this CD release party for the past year while recording my new CDs and I still cant wait to share these new songs with you. If you are interested, A Beautiful Blur and The Revenge of the Rowdy Prairie Dogs will be in stores in the Madison area on November 20th and will also be available here at the record company website.......
I want to thank my wife Jill and my family, friends and neighbors who have all helped me in so many ways. Life is a precious thing and everyday I thank God that Ill have a second chance to live, to watch my kids grow and to make more music!
I hope to see you soon, have a wonderful holiday season and remember to take good care of your heart!
Oct 29, 2007
"A Beautiful Blur" and "The Revenge of the Rowdy Prairie Dogs" are in stock and available for your listening enjoyment.
They'll be in stores on November 20th but you can order them today at
CD RELEASE PARTY at The BRINK in Madison on December 8th at 9:00pm featuring the Rowdy Prairie Dogs and The Crashers!
Sep 20, 2007
Sep 14, 2007
Here is a link to check out the promo video for the movie "Madison". I had the honor to sing 2 songs for this movie as well as placing "Rewind" from "A Beautiful Blur" in the film.
Sep 7, 2007
It's been a beautiful blur this past year as I have been working on my new Cds! I'm happy to say that I'm climbing out of self-imposed "studio hibernation" and all is on track for a November release. Mixing for "A Beautiful Blur" and "The Rowdy Praire Dogs" has just been completed by Sir Mike Zirkel at Smart Studios and we are set to master the projects with Trevor Sadler next week at Mastermind Productions in Milwaukee. I hope to post a couple of songs on the site soon.
For the first time in 25 years I don't have many gigs on the horizon. But I'll have lots to do with promoting these Cd's and handling the business end of PopBomb Records. I do plan on doing some shows throughout the fall and there is talk of putting "the Rowdy Prairie Dogs" together as an actual band. I'll keep you posted!
May 29, 2007
Greetings and thanks for coming to my site!
The Lucas Cates Band won 3 awards for Best Pop Record, Best Pop Song and Best Pop Artist at the MAMA's(Madison Area Music Awards). It's been an honor to be a part of this young singer/songwriter's music and a real treat to have produced this CD.
I'm still working on what has turned into 2 Cd's to be released this fall. The Robert J. record will be called "A Beautiful Blur" and the Americana/Country record will be called "The Revenge of the Rowdy Prairie Dogs". I can't wait to share these new songs with you.
The Moon Gypsies will be at Summerfest this year on the Potawatomi Stage on July 7th at 2pm. Come on down and help us party on this lucky day(7-7-7)!
Jun 5, 2007
Q: Where did you grow up?
A: As a child I grew up as my family criss-crossed North America following my Dad's career with the Canadian National Railroad.
Q: What made you realize that music was your path?
A: I've loved music ever since I can remember. But I think it was in college when I was listening to the old Buffalo Springfield song, "Bluebird", and specifically to the guitar break in the middle of the song when I said, "that's it, I'm going to be a musician!"
Q: How would you describe the music that you typically create?
A: Americana seems to fit. With a midwestern soul.
Q: Who are your biggest musical influences?
A: From Elvis and Hank Williams, to Bob Dylan and the Beatles, CSN&Y and Little Feat to Springsteen and everything in between. Also, I would have to say the musicians who I have worked with over the years have influenced me in amazing ways.
Q: What makes your music unique?
A: It's written from the heart with my own brand of soul. My songs are a result of my life's experiences and reflect a journey taken on the road less traveled.
Q: Has there been one particular moment in your musical career that you're most proud of?
A: I've had several........ being kissed by Bonnie Raitt! Playing shows with amazing artists like Ray Charles, The Beach Boys, Taj Mahal and Delbert McClinton. Winning the Billboard Songwriting contest. But, the one that stands out as the most humbling moment in my musical career is when I sang "Dock of the Bay" at the dedication of the Otis Redding memorial.
Q: What's next for you?
A: New Cd's, new songs! New musical ventures including producing other artists. Watching the kids grow! Staying healthy, staying positive and staying true to myself and my family and ............................staying happy!
Jan 19, 2007
Thanks for coming to my website and I hope your New year is going great!
I've started tracking for a new CD and I'm looking forward to releasing several musical projects this year. The Moon G's are still doing some gigs and I'll be playing with the Lucas Cates Band as well.
Speaking of Lucas, here's a press release about The Lucas Cates Band's visit to Cincinnati this past week......... We had a great time!
The Cincinnati Ballet performs modern dance piece to song by Madison Singer/Songwriter, Lucas Cates.
The Lucas Cates Band has just returned from Ohio where the Cincinnati Ballet performed a modern dance piece to Lucas song 4everytime from his debut CD, Contradictory on PopBomb Records. The performance was a gift from the city of Cincinnati to the graduating members of their C-change leadership program for young professionals. The evening was attended by over 300 people who were also treated to a short speech by legendary recording artist and now Cincinnati resident, Peter Frampton.
The song 4everytime which has received significant national airplay on College radio and here at home on 105.5 Triple M, is a mixture of spoken word and an infectious sing along chorus. It tells the story of a fairytale/hermit type character and his dream for love.
Last September, The Lucas Cates Band showcased at the Midpoint Music Festival in Cinncy where their Cd caught the attention of Brian Frank, an executive from Proctor and Gamble who helped sponsor the prestigious music conference. He put it in the hands of the Cincinnati Ballets artistic director, Victoria Morgan and in November, they flew Lucas down to coordinate ideas with Ms. Morgan and choreographer Jay Goodlett, which led to the performance this past Tuesday night.
Oct 3, 2006
Hey everyone! Thanks for coming to my site. Fall is here and the "Beautiful Blur" of life keeps on going!
We've had an exciting time with the "Lucas Cates" Cd. Over 200 college stations throughout North America have been playing his music. If you haven't heard Lucas' music yet, go to http://www.lucascates.com and check it out. Songs can be listened to or downloaded there; or, you can really support the arts by ordering the CD. Our thanks goes out to Tinderbox Promotions for doing such a great job promoting "Contradictory" to the college market.
The Lucas Cates Band had a successful trip to Cincinnati where we played a cool showcase gig for the MIDPOINT MUSIC FESTIVAL. We met a load of very cool industry people and saw some incredible bands!
I've just listed all the gigs that I/The Lucas Cated Band/The Moon G.'s have coming up this fall. Check out my Gigs page to find out about all of these musical endeavors.
Finally, I'm putting the finishing touches on a new crop of songs that I will be recording this fall and winter. I hope to have something out by the spring.
The CD is tentatively called.... "A Beautiful Blur".
Thanks, Enjoy the blur!!!!! RJ
Aug 28, 2006
Hope you are having a wonderful summer. Life is good for me these days.
We at PopBomb Records just released Lucas Cates' debut Cd "Contradictory" to 350 college stations around the country and in our first week we have had 65 stations adding it to their playlist. A great start, even if I do say so myself. The Lucas Cate Band is headed to Cincinnati to be featured at a Showcase at the Midpoint Music Festival in late September and we'll be playing on top of the roof at the Monona Terrace on September 27th, followed by an after work show at the Overature Center on October 19th.
I had a lot of gigs in July with The Moon G's and The Lucas Cates Band and some solo shows too. Summerfest was a blast! Playing at the UW memorial Union was another highlight and opening for John Eddie was an honor.
I'm happy to say that I am in the pre-production phase of a new CD that I plan to record throughout the fall, to be released in early 2007. I've been writing a whole new crop of songs over the last couple of years and I'm excited to record them for your listening pleasure.
Take care and I hope to see you out and about! Don't for get to keep Howling at the Moon!
May 16, 2006
Welcome again to the website. I haven't had a chance to update this in a while.
I've been busy doing PopBomb Records work promoting Lucas Cates new CD, "Contradictory". His song "4everytime" is in regular rotation on 105.5 Triple M and we are about to release it nationally to Triple A radio. http://www.lucascates.com
I've been playing a lot of gigs lately. Solo shows, Moon Gypsies shows and The Lucas Cates Band shows. PLEASE, checkout my Gigs page and come out to a show or two! There are some cool gigs coming up including.......
THE MOON GYPSIES..... at Christy's Landing for their annual Memorial Day Celebration(May 29th @ 2:00pm), Monona Terrace Concerts on the Rooftop on June 8th and at SUMMERFEST on the HARLEY D Stage(July 3rd @ 2:00pm)
The Lucas Cates Band is playing Arts Fair on the Square on July 8th and at the Memorial Terrace at UW Memorial Union on the on July 28th.
Have a great Spring and I hope to see you soon!
Feb 1, 2006
Robert J.'s song "Don't Go Away" is in the finals of the 2005 International Songwriting Competition. Selected out of 15,000 entries it is an honor to be included with the other final songs from around the world. "Don't Go Away" is nominated in the AAA/Roots/Americana category. The winners will be announced in March. You can cast a vote for the People's Voice award by going to
Listen to "Don't Go Away" demo recording by going to the Songs page on this site.
Jan 11, 2006
Happy New Year and welcome to my official website. My thanks to Robert Johnson (the delta blues guy) and, Robert Johnson (the guy from Naples, Florida) who sold me robertj.com for a very resonable price. Sorry to all the other Robert J.'s in the world --- It's my site now!!!!!
I've been busy this past year playing with the Moon Gypsies, writing a few songs, running an open mic, building PopBomb Records and spending all my other available time split between producing Lucas Cates debut CD, Contradictory and.......watching the kids grow.
It certainly has been a wonderful Blur!
Someone once said, "It's all good when your banging out your music on an old box of wood!" So, I'm truly blessed to have family, friends, fellow musicians and business associates like Dave Stratton and Lucas Cates in my life. We're looking forward to an exciting year, launching Lucas Cd and The Lucas Cates Band, playing with the Moon Gypsies, doing some solo shows and for always and forever.......Watching the kids grow! Stay tuned.
Until later, Robert J.
Check out the new site, you can now buy Mp3 downloads right here from the recordings or other song pages. Very cool!
Jan 12, 2006
Robert J. wins 2 awards in the Berghoff and Blues Song Contest!
Not only did Robert J.'s song "Will It Always Be This Way"(co-written by R.J. Reynolds and Mary Gaines) win first place in the Berghoff and Blues contest, but his Billboard winning song, "A Million Miles Away" placed second.
Berghoff & Blues Contest Winners
Congratulations to the nine artists selected by Berghoff to be featured on www.berghoffandblues.com ! These artists, chosen for their exceptional blues tunes, will not only be spotlighted and have their songs available for download on the Berghoff & Blues website for the next year, but will also receive a cash prize and software from Broadjam. Go to www.berghoffandblues.com to download the winning songs!
Robert J. signs a 4 song Publishing deal with L.A. publisher, Transition Music. His songs, A Million Miles Away(both his version from Rewind and The Moon Gypsies version) which was a Billboard Song Contest winner, plus I Ain't Blue and I Will Be Strong a gospel song from Robert J.'s Family Tree CD were picked up. Transition Music has a long history of placing songs in TV and Film from The Sopranos all the way back to Raiders of the Lost Arc and Ghost Busters.