During the early '80s, Rush signed with the La Jam
label, where he remained for a number of years; there his work became increasingly funky and comically eccentric, with records like 1984's Gotta Have Money and 1985's What's Good for the Goose Is Good for the Gander often featuring material so suggestive he refused to re-create it live during his endless string of club dates. During the mid-'90s, Rush moved to Jackson, Mississippi, and struck a deal with Waldoxy Records
, heralding a return to a soul-blues sound on LPs including 1995's One Monkey Don't Stop No Show, 1997's Lovin' a Big Fat Woman, and 2000's Hoochie Man.
In April 2001, while Rush and his band were en route to a date in Pensacola, Florida, their tour bus crashed, injuring several bandmembers and killing one, Latisha Brown. Rush was hospitalized for a short time, then returned home to recuperate. But the unstoppable Rush returned to action in 2003, releasing the studio set Undercover Lover and the concert souvenir Live at Ground Zero (a CD and DVD set), both on his own label, Deep Rush
. Another studio album on Deep Rush
, Folkfunk, followed in 2004. Rush released two albums in 2005, Hen Pecked and Night Fishin', and continued his prolific activity with 2008's Look at What You Gettin', which offered a mix of ballads, soul, and bluesy double entendres.
Between 2009 and 2014, the prolific Rush released four albums while he slowly but surely began gaining a mainstream audience, attracting a following among fans of contemporary soul and blues. In 2015, Omnivore Recordings
released Chicken Heads: A 50-Year History of Bobby Rush, a four-disc box set that skimmed the highlights from Rush's career as one of the hardest-working men in soul and blues. In 2016, Rush signed a deal with the respected roots music label Rounder Records
, which released the funky and eclectic Porcupine Meat, featuring guest appearances from Joe Bonamassa
, Dave Alvin
, and Keb' Mo'
. ~ Jason Ankeny, Rovi