|Birth name||Orville J. Rhodes|
|Also known as||Red|
December 30, 1930|
|Died||August 20, 1995
Los Angeles, California
|Genres||Country, country rock|
|Instruments||Pedal steel guitar|
|Years active||1960s - 1990s|
|Labels||Crown, Countryside, Exact, Happy Tiger, Alshire|
|Associated acts||Michael Nesmith and The First National Band, among many others|
Orville J. Rhodes, better known as Red Rhodes or O. J. Rhodes (December 30, 1930 – August 20, 1995), was an American pedal steel guitarist. His mother taught him to play the Dobro at the age of five, but at the age of fifteen he switched to the steel guitar. He was a boxer and an oil company engineer before he settled into music. He moved to Los Angeles in 1960 and became a session musician.
Rhodes played pedal steel on many country rock, pop and rock albums with The Monkees, James Taylor, The Beach Boys, Seals and Crofts, The Byrds, The Carpenters, Spanky and Our Gang, and many other groups, as part of the "Wrecking Crew" studio musicians. He is most often remembered for his work with former Monkee Michael Nesmith on Nesmith's first solo albums in the early 1970s. Rhodes is also credited for the "other-worldly" effects he created with pedal steel on The Ventures futuristic album The Ventures in Space in 1964.
In the late 1970s Rhodes shifted his focus from performing to guitar electronics at his Royal Amplifier Service shop in Hollywood, California. There Rhodes modified amplifiers and created his custom Velvet Hammer guitar pickups for James Burton, Clarence White, Gerald Ray. and other influential guitarists. His shop staff included future instrument makers David Schecter, Michael Tobias and Bill Chapin.
Rheumatoid arthritis restricted Rhodes' public performances and recordings in the 1980s and 1990s, with the notable exception of his appearance on Michael Nesmith's Tropical Campfires album and tour in 1992. Rhodes fell ill soon after this tour, and died on August 20, 1995.
- Once a Day, 1961, Crown
- Blue Blue Day, 1962, Crown
- Steel Guitar Rag, 1963, Crown
- Red Rhodes Live at The Palomino, 1969, Happy Tiger
- Velvet Hammer in a Cowboy Band, 1973, Countryside
- Red Rhodes' Steel Guitar, 1979, Alshire
- Fantastic Steel Guitar, 1980, Exact
- Steel Guitar Favorites, 1990, Alshire
- Skid Row Blues, Nothin', et al.', 1963, Hal Ford Forrest D Halford
- The Ventures in Space, 1964, The Ventures
- Begin, 1968, The Millennium
- Notorious Byrd Brothers, 1968, The Byrds
- The Wichita Train Whistle Sings, 1968, Michael Nesmith
- Bubble Gum, Lemonade & Something for Mama, 1969, Cass Elliot
- Instant Replay, 1969, The Monkees
- It's Not Killing Me, 1969, Mike Bloomfield
- John Phillips, 1969, John Phillips
- Hand Sown ... Home Grown, 1969, Linda Ronstadt
- Nancy, 1969 Nancy Sinatra
- Weeds, 1969, Brewer & Shipley
- The Blue Marble, 1969, Sagittarius
- Magnetic South, 1970, Michael Nesmith
- Loose Salute, 1970, Michael Nesmith
- Sweet Baby James, 1970, James Taylor
- Tom Rush, 1970, Tom Rush
- Nevada Fighter, 1971, Michael Nesmith
- Possum, 1971, Possum
- Lead Free, 1972, B. W. Stevenson
- One Man Dog, 1972, James Taylor
- Rhymes and Reasons, 1972, Carole King
- Son of Schmilsson, 1972, Harry Nilsson
- A Song for You, 1972, The Carpenters
- Summer Breeze, 1972, Seals & Crofts
- Tantamount to Treason, 1972, Michael Nesmith
- And the Hits Just Keep on Comin', 1972, Michael Nesmith
- Willis Alan Ramsey, 1972, Willis Alan Ramsey
- Five & Dime, 1973, David Ackles
- Pure Country, 1973, Garland Frady
- Pretty Much Your Standard Ranch Stash 1973, Michael Nesmith
- Valley Hi, 1973, Ian Matthews
- Calabasas, 1974, B. W. Stevenson
- L.A. Turnaround, 1974, Bert Jansch
- Black Bach, 1974, Lamont Dozier
- The Prison, 1974, Michael Nesmith
- Diamonds & Rust, 1975, Joan Baez
- Horizon, 1975, The Carpenters
- Midnight on the Water, 1975, David Bromberg
- Marriott, 1976, Steve Marriott
- Sweet America, 1976, Buffy Sainte-Marie
- Frolicking in the Myth, 1977, Steven Fromholz
- Road Songs, 1977, Hoyt Axton
- The Way I Am, 1981, Billy Preston
- Tropical Campfires, 1992, Michael Nesmith
- "Orville Rhodes; Country and Western Musician". LA Times. Retrieved 2016-02-04.
- Brennan, Sandra. "Red Rhodes - Biography". allmusic. Retrieved 2009-06-12.
- "Biography for Red Rhodes". IMDB. Retrieved 2009-06-13.
- Eden, Dawn (1992). The Ventures Play Telstar, The Lonely Bull and Others/Ventures in Space (CD insert). The Ventures. Hollywood, CA: EMI America Records. E2-80239.
- Gerald Ray
- "Products". Velvet Hammer Pickups. Retrieved 2009-06-13.