Classics: Meet Nigel Mack and "Rusty"


Multi-tasking Nigel Mack

Meet triple threat, multi-tasking blues man Nigel Mack and "Rusty," who brought classic sounds to Tuesdays at the Triangle

Songwriter, singer and musician Mack often multi-tasks picking or strumming his guitar while playing his harmonica or singing. He has 150 to 200 gigs a year as a solo performer and with his band "Nigel Mack & the Blues Attack." 


"Rusty" a 1929 steel resonator guitar

"Rusty" is often with him. He met "her" in 2001 after a long search for a steel resonator guitar. "A friend of mine had one and I wanted one. But, they are hard to come by because they were discontinued. When one was available in Minneapolis, MN, I was able to afford one 16 years ago." Rusty is a 1929 national resonator guitar. 

The uniqueness of this type of guitar is described by Mack. "It is a steel guitar that has a spun aluminum cone in it. Think of a speaker. It has a sound cone facing you but in these guitars, they face downward.

"The strings lay on top of a "biscuit," which causes the sounds of the strings to resonate. It gives you a bluesy tone you can't replicate." 

Canadian born Mack's mom always described her son as "drawn to the record player like a moth to a flame." That attraction took a detour during college days when he studied art but resurfaced after that. "After all both art and music have form, tone and function," says Mack.


Mack and his album cover

His album cover for Devil's Secrets gave him the opportunity to bring his visual audio talents together. After creating the music, he designed the cover.

That album was the #1 Canadian blues CD of 2012 in Canada. In 2011 he received the Windy City Blue's Society award. 

Sounds of his musical work can be heard on his website or in person, in such venues as Chicago's House of Blues.


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