Recognition of Rusty's Talent

Rusty's artistry and talent have a multi-decade and wide following in the music industry.  Here is a sampling of what some of the wonderful individuals have to say who have enjoyed and continue to appreciate and recognize this legendary performer:

From Rudy Sarzo, legendary bassist who has helped sell in excess of 30 million albums and performed for Rock & Roll supergroups Ozzy Osbourne, Quiet Riot, Whitesnake, DIO, Blue Oyster Cult, & The Guess Who):

"Rusty Golden's EP 'Confessions' is a perfect blend of modern country sounds and old school story telling songwriting.  They rarely write these kind of well crafted tunes anymore". 

From Deborah Evans Price of Billboard Magazine

"...The most compelling music always comes from real life and Rusty Golden has long had a gift for distilling experience into insightful, poignant songs. His new album is a potent collection of songs powerfully informed by his battle with addiction and his recovery. "Reason Why I'm Here" and "Hollow Man" are heartfelt examinations that will resonate with many people. Sung with passion and conviction, these songs are among the best work this gifted singer/songwriter has ever delivered. Spend some time with this album. You'll be richer for the experience."

From Dianne Willkinson, Songwriter (over 370 of her songs have been recorded by other artists):

"I discovered that he is a brilliant songwriter, and of everyone I have written with, no one hears melody and chords quite like Rusty does.  He’s great to work with, plays great piano, sings, plays drums and guitar, and he is also a great producer/arranger. Bottom line, he’s mega-talented.  We have written probably 35 or more songs in the five years we’ve known each other and gotten quite a few of them recorded, and I can say he is not only a favorite co-writer of mine, but a great friend as well".

From Jeffrey Steele, Nashville Songwriter Hall of Fame inductee and 2 time BMI Songwriter of the Year:

"Rusty and I go back a long way and share so many musical moments, stages & influences , so it’s always a joy to hear where his inspiration comes from when he writes & performs.  He always takes me on a journey! His latest, 'CONFESSIONS', might be my favorite yet".

From Devon O'Day, WSM 650AM Home of the Grand Ole Opry Radio, Producer of the #1 country music morning show in the US, Host of the syndicated "Country Hitmakers":

"Rusty Golden is that electric kind of performer that pulls in a room just by walking on stage.  You CAN’T STOP WATCHING HIM.  You just can’t!  His new collection of feel good love songs remind you to dance, to ride in a convertible, holding hands, with the music loud….and that when you are in love, you are forever sixteen".

From Gerald Crabb, Songwriter and author of the popular "Through the Fire" (he has written over 475 songs, with 26 of those claiming the number one spot nationally): 

"I think Rusty Golden is one of the most talented guys that I have ever met. He has mastered basically every genre of music. He has taken years and years of musical experience and carried it over to the Christian music audience. Therefore we are blessed because he does it right. This is what you can expect: great melodies, great structure, and great substance; add to that a lot of heart and soul and you've got a great Rusty Golden song. I'm proud to call him my friend".

From Robert Oermann of Music Row Magazine

"I have always loved this guy’s work, from way back when he was a kid in the Nashville pop/rock groups The Boys Band, GoldenSpeer and The Goldens. The son of new Country Hall of Fame member William Lee Golden of the OAK RIDGE BOYS has since had a tumultuous life as a gospel and country songwriter, a session musician, a record producer, a survivor of heart bypass surgery and drug addiction. His first solo album is a collection of songs about recovery. The title tune by Nashville Songwriters Hall of Famer Jeffrey Steele will touch your heart with its inspirational fervor. Whether you’ve ever been through recovery or not, this album will do you a world of good".

From Joe Bonsall, Country Music Hall of Fame Member and 40+ year member of the Grammy-winning group The Oak Ridge Boys

"Having known Rusty Golden since he was a young boy. I have watched him grow as a songwriter and musician....  and have always loved and admired how he has handled life’s adversities. Thankfully he has relied on the power of a great relationship with Jesus Christ to conquer the powers that would derail most people but typical for Rusty, he has used these blessings in a positive way.... through his music. His albums are masterpieces of songwriting, musicianship and studio production. Rusty’s talent is immeasurable and every song are works of art. His music is a MUST HAVE in the collection of most any lover of GREAT MUSIC!".

From Neil Pond of Parade Magazine on Rusty's solo-album release 'SOBER'

"Country music’s enduring stereotype of wasted days and wasted nights gets washed clean in these 13 potent, poignant songs [Rusty's release of the 'Sober' album] —from a cadre of Nashville’s top tunesmiths—that reflect Golden’s profound turnaround after his own recovery from addiction and co-dependence. Outstanding production, Golden’s world-weathered honesty and his thoughtful selection of material combine to make this a masterful, moving and sometimes even grooving self-portrait of a life now turned toward light instead of darkness".

From Bill Gaither, 6-time Grammy winner Christian Contemporary and Southern Gospel Singer and Songwriter

"As one of the promising young writers in our field, Rusty Golden undoubtedly has a bright future ahead of him.  I'm very excited about his ideas and I believe the sky is the limit for him."

From Lorraine Walker, Gospel Music Journalist

Have you ever been driving in the dark when you look up and see a house with all of its drapes open and blinds drawn up? The inside lights reveal the life of the occupant and you are drawn in by the intimacy and honesty of that stranger’s world. Sober opens up all of the windows and doors of Rusty Golden’s heart and draws you into his world of addiction recovery, faith, relationships and all the stuff that is life.

Golden has shared with me in the past about his battle to reach recovery, and though I could write word upon word about the darkness that addicts experience and what it means to reach the Light, nothing I write could help you understand this journey as much as Sober. From “Out of My Hands” through to becoming “Stoned on Love,” the emotion and the expression of Golden’s gravelly vocals will speak to your heart. If you can listen to this CD all the way through without tears falling, you are made of stronger stuff than I am.

Golden has always reminded me of Elton John with the way he interprets music, and I can hear this influence throughout. I love the piano riffs, the incredible saxophone and the driving guitar beat. Just like Sir Elton’s music, you will not get bored or have that déjà vu feeling that every song sounds the same. Golden is gifted and musically articulate.

Each time I have listened to this album, I have been grabbed by the message in a different song. Beginning with “Out Of My Hands,” Golden shows us what it takes to maintain recovery from addiction. However, each track speaks to events that all of us experience. From lines such as “the fine line separating right from wrong that oughta be obvious is all but gone” from “Things I Lean On,” to “…sinning faster than Momma was praying,” the “God-shaped hole” of “Hollow Man,” and the enthusiastic “Stoned on Love,” we can relate to times when we felt ‘hollow’ to times when we were so filled with the love of Jesus, we had a natural high.

Rusty Golden has written many songs for successful Gospel artists, but fans of “John In The Jordan” should be alerted that this CD is not filled with quartet-style songs. In my opinion, perhaps only a couple of the tunes are playable on Gospel Radio: “The Reason Why I’m Here,” “Thank You Lord For This Day,” and perhaps “Living Right Now.” However, if you enjoy variety and gutsy vocals, this CD is for you. If you feel the relief in “I found Heaven in the hell I raised, in the not-so-good-old, ‘good old days…'”; pain in “though I love you I have to give you up;” and the dependence in “show me how to walk on feet of clay,” then this is an album you want to add to your collection immediately.

From an Inspirational Country and regular Country music radio point of view, most of these songs will appeal to a wide demographic. “Things I Lean On” has an easy feel, perhaps this is one that should introduce listeners to the world of Rusty Golden. This world is intense, provocative and edgy, but not one to be ignored. Sometimes we think we should present a picture with all the right pieces in place. Golden is not afraid to let you know that, like most of us, some of the puzzle pieces are still in the box.

This album is for those who are sober and those who want to be, for those with family who are addicted and those who have ever prayed for someone to find freedom. For the small minority of people whose lives have never touched those in need of recovery, you will find your own lyric on this album that will speak to whatever you are going through.

From Kairu, a fan from Kenya, Africa, who texted his friend Mark D. Rubino about first hearing Rusty play and sing: 

“….there is a corner with a keyboard and a microphone…a big man with a very heavy voice who to some may seem intimidating at first….until he sits by his keyboard, rattles off a few keys, and starts paying ‘Tennessee Whiskey’ or any other song, and you feel his soul.  He transports you to days gone by.  It touches you to feel the music, let alone hear it.  The same way you felt when Bob Marley sang ‘No Woman, No Cry’, the same way you will feel when Rusty sings it.  He does the legends gone by justice; and he will be looked upon as a legend in his own right as he takes the music into the future….In a world that is for the most part genuinely fake, it is rare to find such a genuine artist and man as Rusty Golden.”