Manhattan Rob Walsh / About
Rob Walsh started out playing his music as a solo coffeehouse performer and street musician in 70's New York City. It was there he was given the name "Manhattan Rob" by his street-level associates in the Washington Square set.
With the close of the 70's, Walsh became an active side-man on bass, saxophone and guitar during the post-punk era in Max's Kansas City, CBGB and other NYC venues.
After an extended foray into the London Pub scene, Rob returned to the 1980's New York club scene. Rob fronted the enigmatic Hi-Fi TIE, which enjoyed the attention of large audiences in the large rooms as well as smaller venues. Hi-Fi TIE released one EP titled "The Boys Can't Help It" on Right On Red Records in 1984.
During the pursuit of other career horizons, Rob spent 10 years traveling in the heartland and cities of America.
When it came time to sing again in 2010, Walsh resurrected his moniker from nearly 30 years past. He made the rounds at the open mics, in the biker bar circuit, in the hills of Northern New Jersey. While doing solo acoustic gigs and as leader of Manhattan Rob & The Vagabonds, he drew on his life-long feel for the blues and the folk-like roots in him that were reawkened by his years of travel.
Walsh's books of self-penned compositions grew considerably in 2010 and 2011. Since the past decade of traveling, making contact with so many people, in so many places, he had plenty of material to build with. Walsh's writing comes from the heart, and he tries to write from his listener's heart. His themes tend to be populist with the added ingredient of personal depths that many are able to share.
Manhattan Rob's treatment of traditional blues is unique, as he sometimes completely re-engineers a song to get his rhythmic point across, and his audiences groovin'. When Rob sets his hands to covers, he usually draws from the pop and soul standards from the 60's, as well as his favorite traditional blues numbers.
With his unique application of interpretations and compositions, when Manhattan Rob performs a song, you know its coming from Manhattan Rob.