ROSE SINCLAIR played multiple instruments in bands for years, entertaining at festivals, honky tonks, and theaters in the United States, Canada, and Europe, from NYC’s Town Hall to the Carter Family Fold. In 2000, she became obsessed by the steel guitar and never looked back, eventually moving to Austin, TX in 2012 to focus on western swing and learn from legendary steel players including Maurice Anderson, Denny Mathis, Pee Wee Whitewing, and Herb Steiner. In 2013 Rose released a steel guitar record, Lone Star Landing, then hit the road to play steel guitar for Wayne Hancock from 2014-2019 in the U.S., Spain and Brazil, and appears on his 2016 album, Slingin’ Rhythm [Bloodshot Records].
During the 2020 pandemic, Rose spent the lockdown woodshedding with guitarist Sophia Johnson, and produced an album of twin guitar music, Harmony Grits, under the band name Ida Red, which reached #3 on the International Western Music Association western swing chart and nominated for 2021 IWMA Cowboy Swing Album.
She currently fronts her own quintet playing Cocktail Steel — a mix of big band swing tunes and bossanovas, and curates Steel Monday, a weekly steel guitar residency at Sam’s Town Point, Austin, TX. She is a frequent performer at steel guitar conventions around the U.S. and was voted 2018 Steel Guitar Player of the Year by the Texas Steel Guitar Association.
STEEL GUITAR PLAYER
* Toured with Wayne Hancock 2014-2019
* 2021 #3 on International Western Music Association western swing chart – Harmony Grits by Ida Red
*2021 Nominee for 2021 IWMA Cowboy Swing Album – Harmony Grits by Ida Red
* 2020 Nominee for Musician – Ameripolitan Music Awards
* 2019 Nominee for Musician – Ameripolitan Music Awards
* 2018 Texas Steel Guitar Player of the Year – Texas Steel Guitar Association
* 2018 Nominee for Musician – Ameripolitan Music Awards
* 2017 Nominee for Instrumentalist – Academy of Western Artists
* 2017 Nominee for Musician – Ameripolitan Music Awards
* 2016 Runner Up Player of the Year – Texas Steel Guitar Association
* 2016 Nominee for Musician – Ameripolitan Music Awards
* 2015 Nominee for Instrumentalist – Academy of Western Artists
* 2014 Nominee for Instrumentalist – Academy of Western Artists
* 2013 Nominee for Album (“Lone Star Landing”) and Instrumentalist of the year – Academy of Western Artists
Photo by Chuck Interrante.
The longer version…
Rose Sinclair played various instruments in bands for years, entertaining at festivals, honky tonks, and theaters in the United States, Canada, and Europe, from NYC’s Town Hall to the Carter Family Fold. In 2000, she took up the non-pedal steel guitar, eventually moving to Austin, TX in 2012 to focus on western swing and get to know and learn from some legendary steel players including Maurice Anderson, Denny Mathis, Pee Wee Whitewing, and Herb Steiner.
In 2014 Rose got the call and started touring with Wayne Hancock, and appears on his 2016 album release, “Slingin’ Rhythm” [Bloodshot Records] and continued touring until 2019. She has now teamed up with guitarist/vocalist Sophia Johnson in their twin guitar western swing project, Ida Red, fronts her own combo playing jazz standards, and curates Steel Monday, a weekly steel guitar residency at Sam’s Town Point, Austin, TX.
Rose has played the main stage at the International Steel Guitar Association in St. Louis, the Texas Steel Guitar Association Jamboree in Dallas, as well as the Southern Illinois, Denver, Nashville, Phoenix, Tulsa, and Branson steel guitar shows. She’s been a featured artist at the Austin and San Antonio steel guitar clubs, and opened for Asleep at the Wheel.
“Lone Star Landing,” a 6-song CD of jazz standards–Texas style, was released in April 2013, nominated for best album by the Academy of Western Artists, and is receiving airplay in the U.S. and Europe. Mike Gross featured Rose in a “Steel Guitar Musician Spotlight” on the 8/11/13 edition of “Swingin’ West,” his award-winning internet radio show (www.swinginwest.com). She was also featured on Bob Wills Radio, and Highwaywoman Radio. Rose’s steel guitar is joined by Rob Harding on electric guitar, David Carroll on upright bass, and Ron Erwin on drums. The CD was recorded by Jake Langley, at the Chicken Shack Studio, Austin, TX, and is available at CD Baby and iTunes.
Also in 2013, Rose recorded with Joel Savoy’s Honky Tonk Merry-Go-Round (Valcour Records), and had the honor of playing three Louisiana Crossroads shows, backing up Grand Ole Opry star Jimmie C. Newman.
As a multi-instrumentalist, Rose has toured with various bands across the U.S., Canada and Europe, making appearances on “A Prairie Home Companion,” “Mountain Stage,” “E-Town,” West Coast Live,” the BBC, the Voice of America, and venues from Town Hall in NYC to the Carter Family Fold. Her arsenal included various banjos, single and triple-row button accordions, piano accordion, upright bass, acoustic guitar, piano, harmonium, ukulele, mbira, and tap shoes. Rose has taught at music camps including Centrum, Ashokan and Augusta Heritage Center, and appears on over 30 recordings, and four independent film soundtracks.
Rose was a founding member (along with Tara Nevins [Donna the Buffalo], Beverly Smith and June Drucker) of Green Linnet recording artists the Heartbeats Rhythm Quartet, an influential alt-trad stringband that toured extensively in the U.S., Canada and Germany during 1986-1996.
Based in western Massachusetts from 1996-2011, Rose played steel guitar with Girl Howdy and Twin Guitar Swing, upright bass with the Westernaires, and button accordion with Planet Zydeco. She also did West Coast and European tours playing banjo, slide guitar, harmonium and ukulele with the San Francisco-based Crooked Jades, who were cited in 2009 by prestigious British magazine fRoots as “one of the 10 reasons to celebrate American roots music.”
In 2009 she worked with African dance choreographers Chuck Davis and Amaniyea Payne as a musician and body percussionist with the Sankofa Dance Project.
In May 2010, she was part of a residency in San Francisco with the Crooked Jades and the Kate Weare modern dance company. The collaborative piece, “Bright Land,” was premiered at the Joyce Theater in New York City in August 2010, and on the West Coast at ODC in San Francisco in April 2011.
In May 2011, she recorded and performed with Tara Nevins at Levon Helms’ studio in Woodstock, NY (Midnight Ramble), as well as the Americana Music Association Conference in Nashville in October of that year.
In 2012, Rose moved to Austin, TX to focus on the non-pedal steel guitar and western swing.
In 2014, she started touring nationally with Wayne Hancock.