R. Scott
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R. Scott

Lakewood, California, United States | SELF

Lakewood, California, United States | SELF
Band Americana Blues


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"CD Baby: Editor Pick 3/11/07"

This dank, musky piano blues album is calloused but persistent,
resonant and ripe with imagery. Calling upon the bourbon soaked juke joints of yesteryear for its foundations, you can almost smell the tobacco smoke that floats from these beautifully crafted sullen
melodies. Straddling a piano but also emphasizing horns that lend a
tender element to offset the surly vocals and baroque percussion, the
songs are ripe with feeling, sifting through a cloudy room and desperately seeking for a kind ear. Short but sweet, the compositions
make a point and then fade to black, maintaining an even keel that
provides smooth transition from one lyrically whip-smart offering to
the next. The feel of these songs can't be understated; while it's
hard enough to write an honest melody, it's all the more impressive
when a track can evoke a different time or place. For those who fancy
Tom Waits but don't mind a little Randy Newman on the side, this is an album that won't disappoint.
- CD Baby

"Radio Indy.com New CD Reviews 10/25/09"

"Mad Forms & Twisted Poses," by R. Scott, is a sensationally-made Rock/Americana CD. The beginning of the album has more upbeat, honky-tonk rhythms while, toward the end, the vocalist's New Orleans Blues influences are showcased. With many of the tracks performed using only a solo piano to back the vocalist's broad range, the effect is pure and natural, giving the CD a real sense of intimacy between the lyrics, the music, and the listener. The encouraging, "(Ev'rythin'll) Work Out Fine," employs serious piano talent while the vocals are gritty and piercing with the steady tempo of a hit and snare. The aptly named, "Somber Season," tells the story of expectation, loss, and hope in a pleasant and refreshing change to the toe-tappers that precede it; and, although it's slow, it showcases those rich, attention-getting vocals. All in all, this CD is recommended to all Blues/Bluegrass fans, and even those of singers like Randy Newman. It's full, unique, and thoroughly enjoyable.
-Trent C. and the RadioIndy.com Reviewer Team - Trent C. and the RadioIndy.com Reviewer Team

"Orange Pop: CD Review 5/11/07"

Anyone wondering whatever happened to the Helmut Stein Experience (winner of best Blues Band at the 2005 Orange County Music Awards) or Latin funk-mining OO Soul need not fear; singer-keyboardist Scott is back with his first solo project, and it's a joy.

"Snake Oil Elixir" is a self-described "10-song cycle using music to reflect the American landscape." Influences ranging from New Orleans R&B and Randy Newman-styled pop are used to complete Scott's opus. Highlights include the Charlie Musselwhite-styled Mississippi blues of "Devil May Care" and infectious "Midnight Crawler."

- Robert Kinsler/The OC Register

"Local Burns: CD Review - 4/6/07"

**** - 4 stars

Former Helmut Stein Experience keyboardist R. Scott presumably sent in the 10-song disc for a review, but unfortunately, what he's getting instead is some free advice. Dear Scott, as much as it pains me to say this, pack your bags and move to New Orleans already. Your music is far too good for any town that won't recognize it to it's fullest potential. I've been to the Crescent City (as I assume you have), and we both know it's where you belong. I thought your former band, the Helmut Stein Experience, was amazing and never quite got the props it's deserved. When I heard you went solo, I doubted your ability to top your previous group, but somehow you have. The opening title track is a killer romp through cabaret-influenced jazz, while your raspy vocals on "Calico Grey" and "Midnight Crawler" are begging to be sung in a dark club with moss growing through the cracks somewhere off Royal Street. The swinging "Nawlins Bound" proves you know what I say is true., so make a break for it. Long Beach is surely going to miss you, but you owe it to yourself. Please send me a postcard when you get settled and let me crash on your couch next time I'm there. - Ryan Ritchie/Press Telegram/U Magazine

"Summer Soul 7/1/09"

When R. Scott isn’t sitting behind the keyboard in such bands as the New Fidelity (up next on July 11 at Fullerton’s Continental Room), the Carnevel Kings (July 9 at Hip Kitty in Claremont) or OO Soul (appearing July 24 as part of the Summer and Music series at the nautical shell downtown), he takes time (somehow) to do his own stuff, self-described “good-time music” that might make a nice fit on your iPod’s On the Go playlist behind any number of the Band’s hooky horn numbers off the Last Waltz soundtrack.

Two separate albums in one, R. Scott’s newest work, Mad Forms & Twisted Poses, puts, as he says, “stories of struggle and hope,” to poppy, piano-based tracks on songs one through six, transitioning to the more “reflective and soulful” tracks seven through 12, where he trades in the piano for a Wurlizter, organ and Mellotron.

Showcasing R. Scott’s deep, grizzly voice sing-songing over string and horn sections, Mad Forms peaks with “Stumblin’ (In the Dark)” a bluesy, boozy jaunt through the New Orleans soundscape that would perhaps be best paired with some freshly squeezed spiked lemonade. It’s followed by its sister-song, the slower, ever so slightly more sober “Goin’ South” (dig the piano and horn breakdown at 1:40).

Standing out on Twisted Poses, “When Sound Had Feel,” sends you toward the album’s close with its simple lyrics and instrumentation, a fantastically quiet reverie about louder times (“When sound had feel/the lions roared/It shook us all awake.”) In this instance, it’s good the lions are still dreaming. - Ellen Griley/The District Weekly

"New Tunes: CD Review 7/29/09"

The aural bombardment of some schmuck tickling the ivories to songs you’ve never heard (or worse—covers!) can be the pits when you’re stuck in a crowded room with booze on your mind, but if the man behind the piano is R. Scott, the time between drinks will be as fulfilling as that eventual first sip. Scott’s latest solo disc, Mad Forms & Twisted Poses, is a perfectly crafted blend of New Orleans jazz, soul and cabaret, and it’s likely even more of a joy to experience live.

The 12-track disc is actually two records in one: six songs of an upbeat, Bourbon-soaked combination of melodicas, banjos, trombones and tubas mixed with tales of lasting love and keepin’ on; the remaining six are organ/mellotron/Wurlitzer-based tunes (think gospel without the religion). Scott calls it Americana soul. The keyboardist provides an all-inclusive, American sound at times reminiscent of Brian Wilson’s Smile.

From the opening notes of the Cajun-seasoned “The Battle Wage” to the sober melody of closer “Away,” Scott’s weathered voice transports listeners to every whiskey-stained, smoke-laden stage he has ever set his instrument on. He probably wouldn’t make the cut on American Idol, nor would any baseball team pick him to sing the National Anthem, but Scott possesses the sort of conviction that AutoTune cannot manufacture. When singing isn’t his focus, Scott’s fingers create a mint-julep-flavored sound on “(Ev’rything’ll) Work Out Fine” and an uplifting, out-of-nowhere transition on “When Sound Had Feel.”

Listen closely, and you can almost hear Louis Armstrong’s raspy pipes chiming through at least half of these songs. In most circumstances, any appearance by Armstrong would make a record infinitely better, but the Lakewood-based Scott’s tunes are so hopping that even the late jazz legend couldn’t make this disc any spicier. - Ryan Ritchie/OC Weekly

"Locals Only: Going Right Bayou 7/26/07"

The fedora-capped, suit-wearing character whose image graces R. Scott's CD Snake Oil Elixir didn't prepare me for the clean-cut citizen whom I met for this interview. In slacks and a casual dress shirt, Scott looked more mild-mannered businessman than blues musician. But music is, after all, his profession. No other job will satisfy.

R. Scott is well-suited for this business. Photo by Dana Hoff."Sometimes it's plentiful; sometimes it's not," the vocalist/keyboardist explains. "This is what I want to do."

Scott has a diverse portfolio. Besides his new solo project, he is also fronting the '70s-influenced funk band Carnevel Kings and has served time in 00 Soul (which our sister paper LA Weekly named Best Dance Band of 2000), blues band the Helmut Stein Experience, retro-lounge stylists Foxx BBQ and boogaloo revivalists West Coast Harem.

"I like it all," Scott says, regarding his motley musical taste. "I try to find ways to incorporate elements of what I like [into my music]; that's why I have so many projects. Right now, going solo is the most exciting. With a band comes a comfort zone. If you bomb, you all bomb together. Going solo, it's all on your shoulders."

It's a risk that has panned out. Snake Oil Elixir, Scott's solo debut, is what he calls a "mock opera." It's not as serious as some classic-rock favorites, who coined the term "rock opera," but he still tells a story over the course of the album. Snake Oil Elixir relates the sinful tale of a man on a journey to find himself, only to end up where he started, but with a sense of redemption.

"The redemption is the music," Scott clarifies. "The music is what is constant."

Described by Scott as "soul Americana cabaret," Snake Oil Elixir opens with the instrumental title track, and its creeping, cartoonish descent into foggy bayou swamps sets the tone for the rest of the album. Following it is "Devil May Care," where we finally get to hear Scott's marble-mouthed, gusty vocals, expertly layered over his jaunty piano playing. Though it begins with macabre notes, Snake Oil Elixir goes through lighter moods, as seen in the light-hearted romp "Calico Grey" and the sassy, deep South harmony of "Nawlins Bound." Another track, "Death of Me," features a sultry female vocalist (the story's love interest, perhaps?) and bluesy saxophone, harking back to a time of smoky lounges and speakeasies. "The Color Red" brings the eeriness back to the story with Scott's throaty wail building into a haunting drone. Could this be the end of our story's hero? As promised, Snake Oil Elixirconcludes just as it began, with "Can't Stay Here," a purely instrumental song like the first, but with a matured sense of accomplishment. You can imagine credits rolling at this point.

Hundreds of miles away from his city of inspiration, R. Scott brings the sound and aura of 20th-century New Orleans life to those of us who can only imagine its splendor and debauchery. - Erin De Witt/OC Weekly


2009 - Mad Forms & Twisted Poses (CD) (Do Your Worst! Records) - R. Scott
2008 - World We Livin' (CD) (Do Your Worst! Records) - The Carnevel Kings
2007 - Snake Oil Elixir (CD) (Do Your Worst! Records) - R. Scott
2004 - LBCulture.org "Songs for Bethune" (CD) (song - Christmas Time is Here - The Helmut Stein Experience)
2004 - Uptown Game (CD) (Anti-Label) - The Helmut Stein Experience
2002 - OC WEEKLY "Kill Your Radio" (CD) (song - On Return)
2002 - On Return (CD) (Do Your Worst! Records) - The Helmut Stein Experience); All Brothers, Different Mothers (CD) (Manteca Records) - OO Soul
2000 - On Return/Big, Bad Feeling (7") (Butterfly Records) - The Helmut Stein Experience
1999 - Last Call (7") (Butterfly Records) - The Redd Foxx BBQ
1998 - Don Ho (7") (Butterfly Records) - The Redd Foxx BBQ; The Soild Sounds of the 8-piece Brotherhood (CD) - OO Soul
1996 - Introducing... (CD EP) (VentProd.) - West Coast Harem
1995 - Silver Kiss (12") (Insta-Noise Records) - West Coast Harem



The music of R. Scott is a unique mix of deep soul, New Orleans-style r&b, jazz, blues, cabaret and pop styles forging a sound of its own - keyboard based and horn heavy. Taking a journeyman's approach, he continues to build a varied body of work.