Bruce Marshall took up guitar in 1966 at age 12 when his father gave him his ¾ Kay acoustic. He grew up in a musical household, both parents and the 4 Marshall children were always singing, playing guitar and piano and their parents taught them vocal harmony at a young age. Like many of his peers, seeing the Beatles on Ed Sullivan was a watershed moment and Bruce absorbed the sounds from that era, especially vocal groups like The Rascals, Beach Boys, Everly Brothers and Buffalo Springfield. When he discovered the likes of Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, BB King and Muddy Waters, Marshall developed a love of soul music and the blues.
He turned to music full time about a year out of High School with Whitecap, his first professional band. The Sudbury MA native honed his craft in juke joints and gin mills for 7 very formative years and about this time started writing his own music. In the early 80’s Bruce Marshall and the Clue emerged, a five piece band assembled around a batch of original songs Bruce had written that touched on his love of R and B, Blues and Pop. The band developed a loyal following in NE and hit the road non-stop for most of the decade while headlining the top venues in greater Boston and beyond. The Clue put out a vinyl EP “Prove It” on ATM Records in ’87, appeared on numerous compilation albums including “Boston Does the Beatles” and shared the stage with James Brown, Gregg Allman, Todd Rundgren, The Beach Boys, Kenny Loggins, Orleans and Hot Tuna, among others.
By 1989 Bruce had accepted an invitation to join the Toy Caldwell Band. Toy was the founder, lead guitarist and primary songwriter for the Marshall Tucker Band, one of the top groups in the country in the 70’s. Caldwell started the Toy Caldwell Band shortly after leaving Marshall Tucker in ’84 and 5 years later hired Bruce Marshall to sing lead, play keyboards and guitar. The band toured with Lynyrd Skynyrd, Charlie Daniels and The Outlaws when they weren’t headlining their own shows and festivals. During this time the band recorded a Bruce Marshall original “Welcome to the Human Race” with platinum producer Paul Hornsby and it appeared on Marshall’s 2nd release in ’92.
Anxious to get a brand new project off the ground Marshall put together the 8 Pc Bruce Marshall Group in ‘91 and still performs under that name today. With more emphasis on Blues, Roots and R and B the Group put out 6 records and along the way shared the stage with Bo Diddley, Blood Sweat and Tears, Joe Cocker, John Hiatt, Bryan Adams, Boz Scaggs, Doobie Brothers, The Band and a host of others.
Their first record, “Love of the Ride” came out in ’92 and featured Marshall’s “If Dreams Were Money”, which won an ASCAP Songwriter Award, (and would later be recorded by Southern Rocker Michael Allman in ’09) and “Human Race” from the Toy Caldwell sessions. This CD set the bar for all of Marshall’s releases, a very well played and beautifully recorded collection of songs that got rave reviews.
Their next record “Sneak Preview Vol 2” came out in ’97 with a scaled down 5 piece band and a more driving rock approach. “Haunts You” was the single and still a popular song in the live set.
In 2003 the band released “Kalispell”, their best selling CD to date has enjoyed extensive airplay nationally. The title cut was featured in a film and their most downloaded song to date. A tenth anniversary edition was put out recently with a bonus track, “Engine 54 Battalion 9”, a tribute to first responders on 9-11.
In 2007 Bruce released his first all acoustic record, “Restless Soul” and it’s been a big seller at his live solo shows. There’s 15 originals, including new compositions and scaled down versions of songs typically done with the band.
The next studio release was 2010’s “Misspent Youth” and featured the single “Three Chords and the Truth” with guest James Montgomery on harp and vocals. The record received extensive airplay and the single was the second most downloaded song in the catalog. “There Go I” is a song Bruce wrote for our veterans and frequently requested at shows.
Their newest CD “Borrowed Time” came out in 2018 and has hit the ground running with several songs in regular rotation on FM and College Radio. There’s 11 new Bruce Marshall originals and a cover of “Sleepwalk” by Santo and Johnny. Also of note, the band redid “If Dreams Were Money” by popular demand and almost 30 years after the original version with The Clue.
Bruce Marshall has surpassed the 9 thousand show mark as a pro and shows no signs of slowing down. He starts recording a new acoustic CD fall of 2018 for a late 2019 release.
Bruce Marshall’s music career spans 6 decades. Known equally well for his riveting band shows with the Bruce Marshall Group, The Nor'easters and his soulful, heart felt solo performances. Bruce is also half of the Montgomery and Marshall acoustic duo with bluesman James Montgomery. A tireless performer armed with great originals, an expressive, soulful voice and a commanding guitar style, both on electric, acoustic and steel dobro, he’s earned a reputation as one of New England’s best.
Bruce Marshall and James Montgomery formed the “Montgomery and Marshall” duo, which has been ongoing for 20 years and they’ve shared the stage with BB King, including a show celebrating the BB’s 70th birthday at the Capitol Center in Concord, NH., and most recently at the Hampton Beach Casino Ballroom. The duo has also played with John Hiatt, Southside Johnny, George Thorogood, Peter Frampton, The Band, Marshall Tucker, Blue Man Group,
J. Geils and countless others. They’ve released 2 CD’s and still continue to play on a regular basis at concerts, festivals, clubs and coffeehouses.
Bruce Marshall was a member of The Toy Caldwell Band in ‘89 and ‘90. Toy was the founder, writer and lead guitar player of the Marshall Tucker Band. TCB toured with Lynyrd Skynyrd, Rick Danko, Charlie Daniels, and The Outlaws, among others. Bruce sang lead vocals, played guitar and keyboards, and the group recorded his own “Welcome to the Human Race” with famed platinum producer Paul Hornsby (Charlie Daniels, Marshall Tucker). Bruce also worked on the band’s major label CD with legendary producer Jim Dickinson. Videos of the band are currently on U-Tube.
Bruce’s original “If Dreams Were Money”, won an ASCAP Songwriters Workshop. The group received an award of studio time at Syncro Sound and a music award presented at Boston’s Wang Center. This resulted in his second release “Love of the Ride” with Bruce Marshall and The Clue.
The Bruce Marshall Group has performed with The Beach Boys five times, including a show at Otis Air Force Base that drew over 70,000 people (one of the largest concerts ever held on Cape Cod), and at Holman Stadium in Nashua, NH.
Bruce was the lead voice for the WB Mason Extra Innings show that’s aired during Red Sox broadcasts 3 years in a row and has done voiceovers for many different companies over the years.
Bruce’s song “Kalispell” was used in the movie, “Dan Eagans Wide World of Winter”, broadcast nationally.
Singer Michael Allman, the oldest child of Gregg Allman, has released Bruce’s song “If Dreams Were Money” on his debut CD.
The Bruce Marshall group represented NE at the international Blues Challenge in Memphis in 2008 and was the runner up at the regional challenge in 2007.
Bruce Marshall represented NE as a solo artist at the international Blues Challenge in Memphis in 2010.
Bruce is featured on recent releases by Britt Connors, Ronda Matson, Alan Goodrich and Mark Pollock.
Bruce has been a full time musician since 1974 and has played approximately eight thousand shows over his professional career. He plays guitar, dobro, keyboards, vocals, bass and percussion.
Bruce Marshall has jammed with:
South Side Johnny, Charlie Daniels, The Outlaws, Toy Caldwell, Extreme, Molly Hatchet, Paul Hornsby, K.D. Bell, Sweet Roy Jones, Steven Perry, Denny Breau, Stu Kimball, Peter Hackel, Marty Stuart, Joe Pet, Chris Hicks, Peter Bell, Sal Detroia, Hirsh Gardner, Steven Tyler of Aerosmith, Johnny A, Danny Klein, Doug Bell, G.E. Smith, Brad Whitford, John Fannon, John Butcher, Andy Pratt. David Hull, Sarah Blacker, Charlie Farren and many others.
Bruce is available for select live shows with:
Lisa Marie, Peter Bell, Alan Goodrich, Matt Woodburn, Cheryl Arena, John Donahoe, Andrew Clark, Joel Cage, Denny Breau, John Vanderpool, Sally Marshall, Kit Holiday, Mark Pollock, Doug Bell, Marty Beecy, Brit Connors, Gerry Beaudoin, Dan White, Chuck Farrell, Vernon Northover, Dan MacLellan, a duo with Dave Cournoyer and an all star blues revue featuring James Montgomery.
Bruce has worked with producers:
Jim Dickinson (Radiators, Toy Caldwell), Paul Hornsby (Charlie Daniels, Marshall Tucker), Sal Detroia (Guitarist with Billy Joel), Bill Smith (Pousette-Dart).