Richard Henderson
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Richard Henderson

Port Perry, Ontario, Canada | Established. Jan 01, 2014 | SELF

Port Perry, Ontario, Canada | SELF
Established on Jan, 2014
Band Americana Blues




""Altogether a fine acoustic disc and one well worth acquiring"."

MapleBlues Magazine:

Richard Henderson lives in Port Perry
now but he’s a veteran of the club scene, having
played with Mike McKenna, Gary Kendall,
Al Lerman and Howard Ross. His specialty
is solo acoustic lap steel guitar. On Seventh Day
he includes several originals but for the bulk of
the program he re-interprets a number of blues
standards. Chuck Berry’s “You Can’t Catch
Me” & “Nadine” are not really blues standards
I guess but they certainly do get re-interpreted
on solo lap steel. The others are not quite so
radically different. I like his originals quite a lot,
and not just because his vocals are more relaxed.
“Judgement Day” benefits mightily from having
a bass player along with mandolin, a bodhrán
& backing vocals. “Whiskey Annie” is a brisk
uptempo song, with Suzie Vinnick on backing
vocals. Fred McDowell’s “You Gotta Move” and
Robert Wilkins’ “Prodigal Son” get particularly
good performances. “Your Papa Don’t Know”
is a band performance and all the better for it.
The title song has Suzie back as well as Carlos
del Junco on harmonica. He also guests on “I’m
Ready”, to great effect. “Don’t Tell Me’ is a
more traditional blues but has a very good tune.
Altogether a fine acoustic disc and one well worth
acquiring. His web site is

John Valenteyn, John’s Blues Picks, MapleBlues
Magazine (The Toronto Blues Society), March 2010

See full review at page 8 of - John Valenteyn, MapleBlues Magazine (The Toronto Blues Society) March 2010

""Richard Henderson treats the listener to a wonderful musical experience on this solo acoustic album.""

AltCountryForum (Translated from Dutch) Every year, I find a CD in my year end list that I overlooked for some reason and I think, wow, this one's a beauty. A good example is the CD "Seventh Day" by Canadian steel guitar virtuoso Richard Henderson, a CD that was released at the beginning of the year but I entirely missed. With the acoustic steel guitar flat on his lap and his tonebar gliding over the strings, Richard produces exceptional results. The notes fly to your ears on his solo debut album. Richard's vocals are edgy: sometimes grinding and raw, sometimes poignant and emotional. Intense blues covers such as Bo Didley's Who Do You Love, I'm A King Bee by Slim Harpo, and Prodigal Son by Robert Wilkins are interspersed with some excellent original songs. Besides Henderson's sultry vocals and solid lap steel playing, the album contains only minimal musical ornamentation with the occasional washboard, mandolin or ripping harp. "Seventh Day" is a very organic, minimally produced recording and Henderson keeps my attention with sophisticated arrangements and clever rhythm changes. Richard Henderson treats the listener to a wonderful musical experience on this solo acoustic album. -

""Richard Henderson's performance on lap steel is masterful"!"
December, 2010 -

""Richard Henderson...Pure Class!""

Rootsville, Blues and Roots On The Internet, excerpted and translated from Dutch:"Richard Henderson's masterful use of the acoustic lap steel guitar leads to fascinating and compelling results. Richard Henderson...Pure Class!" - Blues and Roots On The Internet

""On the cutting edge of country and blues music"! Maverick Magazine"

Richard Henderson SEVENTH DAY: ACOUSTIC LAP STEEL GUITAR Self-released ****
Veteran Canadian guitarist Henderson has been spearheading the acoustic lap steel for several years now and unlike most players, he doesn’t use any other instruments or accompaniment, both at his live gigs and on this excellent album. So what you have is mainly his inventive use of sliding steel on guitar strings behind his own vocals with additional backing vocals courtesy of Jeff Rogers, Natalie Rogers and Suzie Vinnick. The songs are mainly blues classics from the likes of Willie Dixon, Bo Diddley, Chuck Berry and Fred McDowell. There’s also a neat rendition of Hank Williams’ Honky Tonk Blues and some Henderson originals including Judgment Day, with Jeff Rogers adding some mandolin and Natalie Rogers on bodrahn and Seventh Day, featuring Carlos del Junco’s harmonica.

- Maverick Magazine (UK)


Richard’s first solo CD, “Seventh Day: Acoustic Lap Steel Guitar”, has aired on over 60 radio stations in Canada and Europe and has received critical acclaim here at home and overseas (see "Press"). “Seventh Day” documents the evolution of traditional roots music from the 20th century into the 21st, all rather unconventionally adapted for the acoustic lap steel guitar. We hear the metamorphosis of gospel, country, and blues into early rock 'n' roll- thematically underpinned by a handful of original songs. The CD highlights Richard’s solo work, although, on a couple of tracks he does get a little help from his friends Suzie Vinnick and Carlos del Junco, both multiple Maple Blues Award winners.

Here are some media comments:


"Congratulations on a fine recording. I wish you all the best with it."

Holger Petersen
President, Stony Plain Records and host of CBC's Saturday Night Blues


"Hi Richard,

I just checked out some of your stuff on Sonicbids. It would be great if you could send a copy of the CD to the station. It will definitely see air time!"

John Hoevenaars
"The Blues Never Die!!"


"This is an enjoyable album, performed with fine musicianship and good taste."

Bruce Iglauer
founder and head of Alligator Records



Richard Henderson: Roots re-interpreted.

Over the past few years, there has been a dramatic resurgence in roots music and a growing interest in the acoustic lap steel guitar. There are, however, remarkably few acts that spotlight that instrument. Richard Henderson’s performances do just that. He has developed a characteristic edgy style based on the traditions of the blues, country and rock ’n’ roll; and the result is compelling. Attesting to that, Richard was named Instrumentalist of the Year by the Durham Region Music Awards and First Runner Up in The Toronto Blues Society's Talent Search. Richard's band performs over 100 shows a year and he has been invited to showcase at the International Blues Summit in Toronto, at the Ontario Council of Folk Festivals Conference, and at Ontario Contact in Kitchener. He has also showcased for Mariposa and Winterfolk Festivals. Maverick, the UK’s leading independent country music magazine, selected one of Richard’s original songs for its covermount CD for a recent issue.

The acoustic lap steel guitar is an interesting and uncommon instrument. It was developed in Hawaii in the 19th century and is the direct ancestor of both the dobro, played in traditional Americana music, and the pedal steel guitar, so characteristic of American country music. It was also instrumental in the development of the slide guitar blues styles played in the southern United States beginning in the early 20th century. Richard's performances give a unique perspective on the convergence of the historical development and the continuing evolution of acoustic roots music.

Richard’s band features the acoustic lap steel guitar together with bass and drums, and sometimes electric guitar. The distinctive slide of the lap steel weaves through an eclectic mix of roots, vintage rock ’n’ roll and blues providing an unusual musical twist that audiences really enjoy. 

 Recently, Richard has also launched a duo with long-time friend and percussionist, Rico Stern, on the cajon. Both uncommon instruments, the Hawaiian lap steel guitar and the Peruvian cajon complement each other perfectly, with the driving beat of the cajon and the growl of the lap steel engaging both discerning and casual listeners alike.

The result, while evocative of roots and folk traditions, is transformational: leading to a vibrant reconstruction of roots music.

Have steel. Will travel.

Band Members