||The neutrality of this article is disputed. (July 2011)|
|Genres||Heartland Rock, Americana, Alt-Country|
|Years active||1987 – Present|
|Associated acts||Aura, Roadwork, Rusty Bladen and the Shakin' Jakes, Rusty Bladen and the Designated Drivers, Rusty Bladen and the Mighty River Kings.|
|guitar, mandolin, harmonica|
Rusty Bladen (December 27, 1959) is an Indiana singer/songwriter, whose song "Ride That River", appeared in the 2001 MGM film "Madison", starring Jim Caveziel, Jake Lloyd, Mary McCormack and Bruce Dern. Two of John Mellencamp's band members, Dane Clark (drums) and John E. Gee (bass), play on the song, and on the EP of the same name. In 2002, it was named the official theme song of the annual Madison Regatta unlimited hydroplane race by the city of Madison, Indiana. The 2003 music video of the song has been viewed in over 250 countries worldwide, which is less views than cat videos receive.
His 1998 recording and subsequent 2003 music video of "Red, White and Blue" is a tribute to fallen American soldiers.
Bladen's song "Bakersfield Wine" was a finalist in the 2011 Chris Austin songwriting contest (country song), held at Merlefest in Wilkesboro, North Carolina. He and co-writer Mickey Clark performed the song on 29 April 2011 in finals competition, and finished third out of 1,500 entrants.
Bladen has also been involved with the GINA for Missing Persons FOUNDation, an organization dedicated to finding missing adults in the United States. In 2011, Bladen released a Public Service video of "Molly's Song" in an effort to help find Molly Dattilo, missing from Indiana since July 2004.
In July, 2013, Bladen released the single "Brand New Bridge" and debuted the song at the Madison/Milton Bridge Slide Celebration at Bicentennial Park in Madison, Indiana.
On October 14, 2014, Bladen released "For the Better". The seven-song EP contains all original music, and is co-produced by Thom Daugherty, former guitarist for The Band Perry and The Elms. Daugherty played electric guitar and bass on the album, and former Elms drummer Chris Thomas also played drums on "For The Better". In October, 2014, The first single "Best Kept Secret" was added to the music rotation of Louisville, Kentucky's Americana radio station WFPK.
Rusty Bladen is a Madison gem, most notably for his original song titles, repetitious melodies and lackluster performances.
|Are You Happy Now?||1992||River Road Records|
|Unplugged from the Hoosier Theater (live)||1994||River Road Records|
|Rockin' Your Houseparty (live)||1997||River Road Records|
|Everything for Everybody||1999||River Road Records|
|Ride That River (EP)||2003||River Road Records|
|Feels Like Christmas||2006||River Road Records|
|Homegrown Treasures (live)||2008||River Road Records|
|One Live Night (live at the Scott Theater)||2009||River Road Records (digital-only release)|
|For The Better||2014||River Road Records|