the robert hill band

the robert hill band

BandBluesAmericana

Elecrtic and acoustic Blues, Roots/ Award- winning songwriting and slide guitar playing. Outstanding and humorous performances, feets will move! Influences:Muddy Waters, Ry Cooder, Lowell George, Duane Allman,Son House, Robert Johnson. LIVE VIDEOS AT: http://www.youtube.com/radiotoneslide

Biography

Robert Hill was born at a very early age, in North Little Rock, Arkansas. As the story goes, whenever someone from the city of Little Rock, (on the other side of the Arkansas River), had something they wanted to get rid of, say, a car, a dog , or maybe an ex-wife or husband, they would drive it over the bridge to the NLR side and dump it. As a result of people dumping, particularly dogs, the town gained the distinguished nickname of “Dogtown”. It made the people proud.

Hill moved to New York City, where he played with local NYC band, The Bluesicians, sharing the stage with numerous national acts,of all ages.
Here he formed the first incarnation of the Robert Hill Band, performing exclusively his own material, and released the cleverly-titled debut cd, "Robert Hill", to excellent reviews. He says many of the songs are autobiograghical, just not necessarily about him.

His latest release, “My Corner”, is a showcase not only for his exceptional writing, but also for his mastery of the acoustic guitar, and soulful vocals. The title song, “My Corner”, won first prize in the AAA / Americana category of the 10th Annual Unisong International Songwriting Competition. Two other songs on the cd, “Angelina”, and “Another Chapter” have also won acclaim in the ISC, and 11th Unisong competitions.

The section of the country Hill grew up in possesses a unique gumbo of musical styles: urban and deep Delta blues, bluegrass, oldtime country, zydeco, ragtime, cowpunk, gospel, even a polka or two in spots.
When you mix it all together, they just call it Rock and Roll. Johnny Cash was born there - what else needs to be said?

"Hill's aggressive slide playing over a rough-and-ready backing track makes us want to slam down some moonshine and start a ballroom blitz. It's intense and relentless, and Hill's slide tone is fat, edgy and fabulous."
Guitar Player magazine
June 2009

CREDITS INCLUDE:
Winner in 3 Categories of The 12th Annual Unisong International Songwriting Contest - May 28, 2009
I was a top 20 finalist in the following categories:

1. Social/Political for:
"First To Fight"

2. AAA/Americana for:
"Love Has No Boundaries"
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BBwxKSJggwY

3. Lyrics Only for:
"Love Has No Boundaries"

Hill’s song, “Long Rain”, was featured in the Smirnoff Ice commercial, “Rope”, which aired during the 2002 Super Bowl game, and continued to run internationally for several years.

His instrumental, “Slide On Rye”, also an award-winner, is currently being used in an episode of, “Queer Eye For The Straight Guy”, running internationally.

Second place winner in the First Annual Slide Guitar Festival, acoustic competition, held in Brevard, NC.
This was a national competition.

Numerous award-winning songs in several songwriting competitions including: Billboard, ISC, and Unisong.

Lyrics

"My Corner'

Written By: Robert Hill


Ninety degrees at midnight tonight
I got my big coat on, the hood’s zipped up tight
Wearing everything that I own
But I’m still cold down in my bones

Act like you don’t see me, but I feel your stare
I’m just drunk, I’m not unaware
I was once like you, I had a family
Now this shopping cart keeps me company

(Chorus)
This is my corner
This is where I lay
I am not beneath you
I just lost my way

(Bridge)
I was driving home, a few years back
My wife beside me, our baby in back
Came over that hill, a truck in our lane
Jacknifed in the road, nothing was ever the same

Two weeks later I woke up alone
Wife and my baby, they never came home
There are worse things than dying, you may find
And one of them’s being left behind

(Chorus)
Lately I been hearing voices at night
I turn to look, but there’s no one in sight
A tap on my shoulder, a brush of my cheek
I feel the sickness sneaking up on me

I heard the voices again last night
Said it was time to give up the fight
Told me they’d come to carry me home
I felt the cold slip out of my bones

This was my corner
This is where they found me
When my angels came
Back and rescued me

© 2006 Wild Animal Ditch Music
(ASCAP)

Another Chapter

Written By: Robert Hill

Another Chapter

Friends they come and go in your life
A few will stand by you, but most just pass on by
Is there a rhyme or reason why
For this chapter in your life

She came to me one lonely night
I lost myself in her smile, I fell right into her eyes
I didn't know the reason why
For this chapter in my life

(Bridge)
Things were so good for a while
But like so many things, time has a way of turning the tide
She slipped away for good, this time
Now it's just another chapter in my life

You lose the thing most dear to you
A friend can help, but it's all up to you
Are you gonna make it through
This chapter in your life

I don't wanna live without you
I pray to God I won't have to
I hope we grow into a couple old fools
Don't know what I did to deserve you
But God knows what I've been through
You knocked me out in the first round

You hold your newborn baby in your arms
It opens up your eyes
It opens up your heart
Then you finally realize
You just wrote the best chapter in your life

©2007 Wild Animal Ditch Music (ASCAP)

Country Soul

Written By: Robert Hill

Ain't no blacktop, down this road
Daddy left them, she was nine years old
Newspaper pasted, on the walls
Didn't keep the cold out at all

Flour sack dresses drying on the line
Cardboard box for a toy, well, it did just fine
Four sisters, a little brother,well there was not time
For a childhood, she grew up fast, but she grew up fine

(Chorus)
Walked the road she was given
Made up what was missing
Spent her whole life giving
She's just living where she's living

(Bridge)
The Depression didn't hurt them
They had nothing to lose
Forced to walk a road
They did not choose
They were just hungry
Didn't think she would mind
But mama whipped them
For standing in that soup line

Moved to the city, got a job downtown
She married the boss, then they settled down
She raised four children and a mother-in-law
With the finest paper pasted
On her walls

(Chorus)

Angelina

Written By: Robert Hill

Spent my whole life running
Trying to get away from myself
Living for tomorrow
I put my life up on a shelf
A child’s laughter cracked my point of view
Brought me to my senses, brought me to my knees

Fame and fortune
Always waiting for my ship to come in
I thought if I had these things
Then my life would make more sense
But you’re all that I’ll ever need
You brought me to my senses, brought me to my knees

(Chorus)
Angelina, ballerina of the living room
Angelina, a Cinderella dancing with a broom
Angelina, you are God’s gift to me
You brought me to my senses, you brought me to my knees

(Bridge)
In this world of mirrors
It’s hard to see
But when I look into the mirror
I see you smiling back at me

(Chorus)

First To Fight

Written By: Robert Hill

Founded by freed American slaves
Adopted our policies, our prejudiced ways
Indigenous people became the new slaves
Second-class citizens, an ethnic maze

The land of liberty, Liberia’s claim
But a hundred years of civil war belie the name
Three warring groups left to kill and maim
But the children are the pawns in this killing game

(Chorus)
First to fight, first to die
Does anybody hear their mother’s cry
Forced to fight, forced to die
It’s the children who pay the ultimate price
First to fight, first to die
Gunshots silence their mother’s cries
Children were the future of Liberia’s past
But when you kill your future, you just repeat the past

(Bridge)
Crimes against humanity, the people’s claim
A president who kills his own, pays for it with the diamond trade
The Krahn, Mandingo, and the government
God will judge the guilty, but, who will save the innocent

Easily led, easier misled
The warlords get inside the children’s heads
Leaders start the war, then disappear from sight
They send in the children to fight their fight

(Chorus 2x)

Different Faiths

Written By: Robert Hill


The older I get, the less I have to say to you
When we were younger, I used to look up to you
But time washed away the pride in my eyes
Now I see clearly who you have compromised

(Chorus)
Your wall is religion, mine is pain
Automatic pilot, misdirected rage
With a book of false promises, exaggerated claims
Separated only by our different faiths

We’ve got our own families now, you and I
Children’s reflections dance across their parent’s eyes
Maybe it’s best we live so far apart
Don’t want to dim the spark in our children’s hearts

(Chorus)

(Bridge)
All my life, I’ll wonder
What became of me and you
Maybe someday we’ll find each other
Stop running away from the truth

(Chorus)

Blessed Dream

Written By: Robert Hill

Rainbow, come down on me
Mix myself a perfect dream
In her mind no shades of grey
She can paint a perfect scene

Take me in your slipstream
Divine alchemy
In my heart buried deep inside
I keep her there, no one can find

(Chorus)
Blessed dream
Came to me
Blessed dream
Came to me

(Bridge)
She ain't worried 'bout no global crisis
She's too busy being happy
Gone her own little thing to do
And she's got the time
To see it through

(Chorus)

Never knew why or what for
You're the reason I was put here for
I don't see you here today
I will see you in your dreams

(Chorus 2x)

Washing Away

Written By: Robert Hill

Tiny stream on a mountaintop
Starts to find it's way
As it rolls from the mountaintop
Takes what it needs along the way
Sometimes the water's muddy
Other times, clear as a brand new day

(Chorus)
Washing away
Just washing away

As it rolls thgrough the countryside
Turns into a river one fine day
The river grows big and strong
Deep and dark, the current can take you away
It can bring on life, just as easily take it away

(Chorus)

As the years go by, grows a little weaker everyday
Before the river melts into the sea,
A tiny stream
Breaks from the river starts to find it's way
Completes the dream

(Chorus)

Love Has No Boundaries

Written By: Robert Hill

Love Has No Boundaries

The screen door slams
A ring flies from her hand
Her tears they burn the garden green

He won't be coming home tonight
But still, she leaves on the light
The baby cries herself to sleep

(Bridge)
A war at hand, calls back her man
War of deception, based on greed
An evening flight, takes him to fight
He left, but he will not say goodbye

(Chorus)
Love has no boundaries
You can't make it walk in a straight line
Love has no boundaries
Sink it and it still will rise

A soldier in a foreign land
In the rubble, moves a young boys hand
He takes the hand, the boy is free

Do they even really want him there
Anger, resentment fills the air
But that young boy knows who set him free

(Bridge)
The morning quiet, explodes in fire
Roadside bomb destroys a soldier's dreams
He clings to life, thinks of his wife
When that young boy comes and pulls him safely free

(Chorus)

The screen door slams
He takes his baby back in his hands
Through a father's eyes he now will see

His fight is over in that foreign land
But a different fight is now at hand
Relearn to walk, relearn to feel

(Bridge)
Sleepless nights, dreams of the fights
And his best friend who never made it back at all
Now all is quiet, holds his wife tight
His buddy's tags are over hanging on the wall

(Chorus 2x)

©2008 Robert Hill/ Wild Animal Ditch Music (ASCAP)

Love Has No Boundaries

Written By: Robert Hill

The screen door slams
A ring flies from her hand
Her tears they burn the garden green

He won't be coming home tonight
But still, she leaves on the light
The baby cries herself to sleep

(Bridge)
A war at hand, calls back her man
War of deception, based on greed
An evening flight, takes him to fight
He left, but he will not say goodbye

(Chorus)
Love has no boundaries
You can't make it walk in a straight line
Love has no boundaries
Sink it and it still will rise

A soldier in a foreign land
In the rubble, moves a young boys hand
He takes the hand, the boy is free

Do they even really want him there
Anger, resentment fills the air
But that young boy knows who set him free

(Bridge)
The morning quiet, explodes in fire
Roadside bomb destroys a soldier's dreams
He clings to life, thinks of his wife
When that young boy comes and pulls him safely free

(Chorus)

The screen door slams
He takes his baby back in his hands
Through a father's eyes he now will see

His fight is over in that foreign land
But a different fight is now at hand
Relearn to walk, relearn to feel

(Bridge)
Sleepless nights, dreams of the fights
And his best friend who never made it back at all
Now all is quiet, holds his wife tight
His buddy's tags are over hanging on the wall

(Chorus 2x)

©2008 Robert Hill/ Wild Animal Ditch Music (ASCAP)

Discography

VIEW LIVE PERORMANCE VIDEOS AT: http://www.youtube.com/user/radiotoneslide

4-14-08 My song, "My Corner", is placed in the top most requested section of XM Radio show, "The Loft".
4-7-08 Currently in rotation on XM Radio show, "The Loft", as well as WUMB Boston.
My Corner" debuts at #19 on the Roots Music Report! - January 11, 2008
2-22-08: Charting at #32 on the RMR Folk top 50.
http://www.rootsmusicreport.com/2.0/charts.php?name=folk
Being put into rotation in Americana/AAA/Folk stations across the country- 3-03-08: Currently been played on over 100 stations.
Radio play- Jan. 7, 2008- In the Top 5 most added as reported to the AMA. Go to: http://pdf.rronline.com/Americana/Americana-20080107-2522.pdf?userid={EmailAddress}

"My Corner", released November 2007, is composed of 10 original songs by Hill. In the Americana/SS vein, three of the songs are already award-winners. The cd has recently been put into rotation in Americana/Folk stations across the country.

Hill's debut cd, released in 2000, is the self-titled, "Robert Hill"- sound clips available at: www.roberthillband.com.

Hill's track, "Ozark Passage", is also included on the Tribes Hill Kindred Folk Vol. #1 compilation cd. Tribes Hill is a collection of lower Hudson Valley musicians- go to: http://www.tribeshill.com for more info.
I have had original tracks air on international TV commercials & shows for Smirnoff Ice, Queer Eye For The Straight Guy, the soundtrack for an award-winning PBS documentary, & PSA's.

Composed soundtrack for award winning PBS Film Documentary, "BURLEY"- the story of a North Carolina tobacco farmer.

Our track, "Slide On Rye" is the theme song for the
weekly Australian radio show, "Blue Country".

Set List

The sets vary, depending on the venue, approx. 1 hr. sets- With over 50 original songs and an endless list of covers, we can go as long as you'd like. We prefer to play more, than less. Here's an abbreviated list:

1. Foolin' Around With You
2. Empire State Blues
3. Ozark Passage
4. Make Me Up A Pallet On your Floor
5. Smokestack
6. 13 Question Method
7. Country Soul
8. My Corner
9. Soul Of A Man
10. Moses McCord
11. Long Rain
12. Mystery Train

1. 12 Gates To The City
2. Rose City
3. Woke Up This Morning
4. Loola Loo
5. Wants To Be Loved
6. Maybe You Will Someday
7. 504 Blues
8. Evolution Blues
9. Skin Game
10. All Shook Up
11. Sister Lisa
12.TV Mama

Covers include: MysteryTrain
All Shook Up
Don't Do It
TV Mama
Willin'
Soul Of AMan
Empire St. Blues
Can't Find My Way Home