Rhett Tyler

"It ain't nothin' but the blues…"

 Rhett Web PhotoRhett Tyler is an American guitarist, songwriter, vocalist, and producer best known for his explosive style of scorching modern blues guitar, passionate vocals and high-octane, house-rocking live performances.

Born in San Antonio, TX, Rhett spent his youth in Mississippi, Ohio, and St. Louis where he grew up listening to and learning about music and the blues. His earliest influences included his father, a talented boogie, and blues pianist, and his mother, a published poet. Rhett realized his own God-given talent when, as a young teen, his parents gave him his first electric guitar.

During the early ’70s Rhett was accepted to Julliard however without an available guitar program he opted to attended Mannes College of Music. After a short period he transferred to Berkley School of Music where he feverishly worked at honing his skills as a player, performer, and writer. Rhett left Berkley to go on tour as bandleader for British R&B recording artist Ruth Copeland. On November 17, 1974  Rhett received his first standing ovation in a major venue for his electrifying featured guitar solo during a performance with Ruth Copeland at the Baltimore Civic Center. They shared the bill with Steppenwolf, Blue Oyster Cult, Aerosmith and PFM.

Rhett left Ruth Copeland after a few years and then had the pleasure of working with many other artists both live and in the studio during the latter part of the ’70s and early ’80s. It was during this time that Rhett joined the T. France Band, a  northeast regional instrument fusion group that provided the opportunity for him to explore, push and test his limits as a guitarist.

In the mid-80s Rhett formed the band, Early Warning. After undergoing a period of stylistic exploration and soul-searching, he brought the band’s focus back to his first true musical love, the blues. His music is certainly rooted in the tradition of blues, but Rhett’s progressive approach incorporates his jazz, rock, and gospel influences to create an innovative modern musical blend with his signature guitar style.

Rhett recorded and released his first CD, entitled “Total Package”, in 1992 to rave reviews from both press and radio. He followed this with an equally impressive second CD, entitled “My Passion” in 1997. In total Rhett has independently recorded and released eight CDs, 6 with Early Warning and 2 solo acoustic CDs. For more information visit the Discography section of this website.

During the first part of the new millenium Rhett survived both a very serious  car accident and decade long near fatal battle with Lyme Disease that landed him on life support in the Intensive Care Unit of Columbia Memorial Hospital in Hudson, NY with little chance of survival. To everyone’s amazement Rhett pulled through and after a few months of recovery was back on stage stronger and performing like he did in the ’70s and ’80s.

Rhett is presently writing songs for his next studio CD and preparing for regional tours here in the states and overseas. He performs both with his band, Early Warning, and as a solo artist on the acoustic 12-string and harmonica.

Rhett has performed at many prominent festivals and venues, including the Mississippi Valley Blues Festival, Davenport, IA, Fleet Blues Fest, Albany, NY, Jersey Shore Jazz & Blues Festival, Redbank, NJ, and Treasure Coast Food Bank Blues Festival, Ft. Pierce, FL. He has also shared billing with many distinguished blues artists, including B.B. King.  Johnny Winter, Lonnie Brooks, Elvin Bishop, Delbert McClinton, and John Hammond, to name a few.

Critically acclaimed by John Swenson of Rolling Stone as “a powerful front man, in the tradition of Johnny Winter [and] Jimi Hendrix. Rhett Tyler is the certain face of future blues.”