BiographyThe mastermind behind the highly successful band the Rippingtons, Russ Freeman may be one of the few smooth jazz musicians to reach star status before many of his fans even knew his name. Although Freeman is adept in a variety of styles, his fluid, lean, relaxed guitar playing (which bears the imprint of Eric Clapton) is among the most easily recognized in contemporary instrumental music. Since the Rippingtons really are Freeman's baby, most of the albums under his own name have been special duet affairs with other star soloists, with the exception of the notable Drive (2002). Russ Freeman shares the name with a major figure in the West Coast jazz scene of the '50s.
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