Leon Russell influenced various musicians including local Damon Fowler

The singular Leon Russell, who died today at age 74, impacted musicians from various generations and genres. The Oklahoma native was a famed session musician, bandleader, and hit songwriter before becoming a solo star in the 1970s. Russell enjoyed a late career comeback when he collaborated with Elton John on the 2010 album “The Union.” The following year, Russell was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and the Songwriters Hall of Fame.” Damon Fowler, while living in a historic cottage in Bradenton Beach, released his 2011 album “Devil Got His Way,” which features mostly originals as well as a cover of Russell’s classic hit “Tight Rope.” “Devil Got His Way” reached No. 13 on Billboard’s Blues Albums chart and while Fowler is best known as a blues musician, like Russell, he enjoys working in various styles; dividing his time between leading a namesake power trio, playing in blues supergroup Southern Hospitality and serving as co-lead guitarist and singer in co-founding Allman Brother Butch Trucks’ Freight Train Band. “I love Leon Russell,” Fowler says from his home in Lakeland, just a few days before returning to the road with Trucks. “There was just something about his mix between country and gospel and honky tonk, he had a really good recipe for all that stuff, soul and blues, he really put it together seamlessly.” READ FULL ARTICLE!