Chad Elliott

Chad Elliott

Midwest singer-songwriter Chad Elliott blends folk roots, swampy blues and soulful writing to deliver an original Americana sound. His live performances have been honed over a decade of being on the road performing more than 200 shows each year. Elliott is lauded as “Iowa’s Renaissance man” by Culture Buzz Magazine. He has penned more than 1,500 songs in his career while also cultivating his skills as a painter, sculptor, illustrator and author (Wilderman’s Treetop Tales; Rumble & Flash).

“That man’s music is as honest as was Woody Guthrie’s.” - Atesh Sonneborn, Smithsonian Folkways Recordings
Elliott’s early career demonstrates a love of folk, roots and singer-songwriter music. He has worked with many greats and shared the stage with artists of the highest caliber, including Odetta, Tom Paxton, Loudon Wainwright III, R.L. Burnside, Ruthie Foster, Jimmie Vaughan, Greg Brown, Bo Ramsey, etc.

On his 20th album, Wreck and Ruin, Elliott dove into his love of roots-rock, soul and blues music with a rocking band behind his artfully crafted songs. Producer and drummer, Ken Coomer (Wilco, Uncle Tupelo) lined up the best rhythm and lead players in Nashville to create Elliott’s greatest album to date. Guitarist and bassist Kenny Vaughan and Dave Roe, legendary Nashville players, add the needed touches to rocket Elliott’s songs into a new arena of hard driving Americana.

“Chad Elliott has assembled not only a great group of songs, but some of Nashville's finest roots music practitioners and producer drummer Ken Coomer to make a soulful and beautiful album. Townes would be proud.” - Will Kimbrough about Wreck and Ruin
On his 21st album, RINGGOLD, Elliott recorded songs at his home studio in Iowa. The studio, built in his grandparents’ former home, helped him connect with his roots and explore difficult songs about those closest to him. It was released in 2017.

Today, with his band The Redemptions, there is a marked shift in his sound that is entirely original. Elliott released his 22nd album, Rest Heavy: The Sun Studio Sessions, in 2018. Greg Brown said of the new album, it’s “low, loose and full of juice. This album’s got a lot of life to it.”

With Rest Heavy, Elliott shows his love of roots-rock, soul, and blues music with a rocking band behind his artfully crafted songs and gravelly delivery. Elliott, performing on acoustic guitar and harmonica, is joined by his full band, The Redemptions, including Tommy Lewis, Travis McFarlane, Kevin Boehnke, Joseph Cafaro, and Jim Van Dorn. The self-produced album was recorded at the famed Sun Studio in Memphis, TN by Ples Hampton. Hampton said, “It was honestly one of the best sessions I've ever had up here. This is gold.”

In November 2019 Elliott released King Pelican. This album holds 8 tracks recorded live with his band, The Redemptions, during a set for The Sun Studio Sessions documentary series featured on PBS. The entire album delivers the goods. It is a colorful album including songs such as the title track, a fun New Orleans-style number about a ne'er-do-well character, and "Paris," which would make Humphrey Bogart shed a tear. King Pelican was released Nov. 3, 2019.

Elliott’s 24th studio album, Tangle with the Ghost, is a rich collection of Americana roots songs. It was recorded alongside other Iowa artists at Old School Studios in Auburn, IA with producer/artist Todd Partridge. The record is sonically diverse. Each track is like a painting or vignette reckoning with the dark night of the soul. “Sometimes you must do the things that frighten you the most. That’s why I still tangle with the ghost,” Elliott sings on the title track. Tangle with the Ghost was released in November 2020.

Chad Elliott released his 25th album, Singing River, on May 17, 2021. He traveled to Muscle Shoals, AL with famed Iowa musician and producer Bo Ramsey to lay the tracks. Singing River was recorded at FAME Recording Studios, where music legends Etta James, Wilson Pickett, Aretha Franklin and many others laid renowned songs into the fabric of time. Ramsey, who produced Singing River, lent his signature sound on guitar. He was joined by two original Muscle Shoals Swampers, Spooner Oldham and David Hood. The new Americana/roots/blues mix that arose in Singing River is exactly the sound Elliott was hoping to create.

Press Quotes
"That breaks my heart and puts it back together again," - Lori Walsh, South Dakota Public Radio (US), of "Painters and Boxers" song

"This album just oozes soul, truth, and seems rather timeless as it could have been recorded almost any time in the last fifty-sixty years." - Jim Hynes, Elmore Magazine (US) review of Rest Heavy

"This is Americana at its finest... Elliott has immersed himself in gospel, blues, roots-rock and white-boy R’n’B to the point where he comes across as a striking combo of Fogerty, Mellencamp and Springsteen." - Mike Greenblatt, Goldmine Magazine (US) review of Rest Heavy

"Rest Heavy is a high-energy, dynamic work. One of the best parts about listening to the album is the clear sense you get that Elliott is having the time of his life playing and recording these songs." - Lucas Benson, Little Village Magazine (US) review of Rest Heavy

"There is so much to be loved about this album. From start to finish, it's a masterpiece of deep soul and blues that shows you all the pictures of the places that inspired its sounds in every song. You need this album in your collection..." - Amanda Marcazo, The Jamwich magazine review of Rest Heavy (US)

“Rest Heavy jumps right at you and doesn’t let go. The whole piece has an edge you can shave with.” - Rob Ellen, Medicine Show Radio (UK) said of Rest Heavy

"Elliott’s got a knack for timeless, relatable storytelling, and his songwriting comes with much heart, integrity and vitality." - Take Effect Reviews (US) said of Rest Heavy

“Chad Elliott has assembled not only a great group of songs, but some of Nashville's finest roots music practitioners and producer drummer Ken Coomer to make a soulful and beautiful album. Townes would be proud.” - Will Kimbrough said of Wreck and Ruin

"Chad Elliott is a veteran singer/songwriter who writes smooth, feel good songs ranging from soulful drinking songs to upbeat road-tunes to down and dirty tunes worthy of Ray Wylie Hubbard." - Calvin Powers, The Americana Music Show

“…Chad Elliott stands out as a timeless and genuine musical poet with supple-strong roots like the bluestem and buffalo grass of Iowa prairie.” - Todd Partridge,

"In the wide scope of Americana music live stories timeless as the land. With dynamic swells amid driven and transient melodies, Chad Elliott tells them one song at a time," - Sam Burrish, Sioux City Journal

Awards and Honors
2020 Kerrville New Folk - Finalist
2018 Kerrville New Folk - Finalist
2015 Unsigned Only Competition - Semi-Finalist - Americana
2015 Folk Alliance International - Official Showcase
2014 Newsong Contest - Midwest Finalist
2013 Top 25 Albums on - So Sang the Crow
2013 Iowa Blues Challenge - Winner Solo/Duo
2013 Rising Star - Finalist
2012 Show Me the Music Song Contest - Finalist - Americana
2012 Int. Folk Alliance Conference - Official Showcase Artist
2011 Iowa Motion Picture Awards - Best Original Music Score
2011 Mixies Award - "Most Creative Tour" - One Horse Town Tour
2009 International Songwriting Contest - 3rd Place Winner - Americana
2009 Woody Guthrie Song Contest - 1st Place Winner
2008 Kerrville New Folk - Finalist
2006’s - Open Mic Winner
2006 Just Plain Folks - Top 20 New Folk Songs

2021 - Singing River
2020 - Tangle with the Ghost
2019 - King Pelican
2018 - Rest Heavy
2015 - Wreck and Ruin
2013 - So Sang the Crow
2010 - The Den Sessions - 10 Volume Set
2009 - Redemption Man
2008 - Swiftsure
2006 - Humbled At My Door
2004 - Bowl of Stars
2004 - Starling Songs
2003 - (homemade) Bowl of Stars
2001 - New Young Destination
1999 - Greener Grass One Man's Junk