A blues musician from Kansas City, Missouri, Samantha Fish impressed industry professionals as a teenager before scoring her first Billboard blues number one in her mid-twenties. Fish grew up in a musical family with a variety of genres, including a steady diet of classic rock radio. Her father played guitar and would sometimes jam with friends at home. Young Samantha started out as a drummer but switched to guitar at the age of 15. As a teen, she would sneak into local blues landmark the Knuckleheads Saloon to hear touring musicians, and she began sitting in with them from time to time after she became legal at 18.
In 2009, Fish recorded the live album Live Bait as the Samantha Fish Blues Band, and the rock-edged guitar work brought her to the attention of Ruf Records. The label featured her alongside Cassie Taylor and Dani Wilde on the 2011 release Girls with Guitars, which featured covers of the Rolling Stones and the Steve Miller Band as well as original material from the three guitarist/singer/songwriters. Later that same year, Fish released her solo debut, Runaway, also with Ruf Records. It was produced by mentor and frequent collaborator Mike Zito.
She saw her first chart success with her sophomore LP, Black Wind Howlin’, also produced by Zito. It hit the Billboard Heatseekers chart and reached the Top Ten of the blues albums chart upon release in 2013. She followed it with Wild at Heart in 2015, which became a blues number one. In 2017, she returned with her fourth studio album, Chills & Fever. Recorded in Detroit with members of the Detroit Cobras it featured covers of obscure pop and soul tunes.
Also in 2017, Fish issued Belle of the West, recorded in Missouri with Luther Dickinson and featuring musical contributions by guitarist/harmonica player Lightnin’ Malcolm, former-Squirrel Nut Zipper Jimbo Mathus, violinist Lillie Mae Rische, and others. The album helped the guitarist pick up a 2018 Blues Music Association award for Contemporary Female Artist of the Year. Fish‘s seventh studio album, Kill or Be Kind, arrived in 2019 and found her working with producer Scott Billington in Memphis.
Artist Biography by Marcy Donelson
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