Artist: Rhyne McCormick, 39

Resident of: Lewistown

Describe your sound/style: I call my solo acoustic show "acoustic rock with a soul," but the last record was definitely alternative country rock, if that makes any sense at all.

Who are your influences? Probably my biggest influence is Edwin McCain. I like Jeff Gaines from Harrisburg who's in Philly now, Peter Gabriel, Ryan Adams, Old 97s out of Texas. A lot of that roots rock stuff, I guess.

You list Big Bird as one of your influences on your MySpace page. What's up with that? That comes from my mother. My mother tells stories of me singing along with Big Bird as a youngster.

Last few albums you listened to? Ryan Adam's "Gold" is something that's always in my CD changer. I just got the James Blunt record ("Back to Bedlam"), and I'm not sure if I like that yet or not. I have to listen to something for a while before I can dislike it or like it.

Worst song on the radio right now? That Hinder tune ("Lips of An Angel"). And now some country guy (Jack Ingram) is doing it, too. I liked the song at first, but now that I've heard it a million times, it drives me crazy.

Who is your biggest musical guilty pleasure? The Bee Gees. Those guys played instruments and wrote their songs and had a great career and great voices.

List a few songs that would be on the soundtrack to your life: Any song that has to do with doing a lot of driving and playing music like (Creedence Clearwater Revival's) "Travelin' Band." I'm really a gypsy. I'm on the road five days a week.

Plug one other local band: There's three local guys. A guy from Harrisburg is Brooks West. And from York, Kenton Shelley. I just like his style of writing and his voice. I find it really appealing. And Dave SanSoucie. He's worked with a lot of different artists.

Who would win in a fight: Big Bird or Peter Gabriel? Peter Gabriel. Come on, Big Bird's some guy in a yellow chicken suit.

What do you need to work on as an artist? More lessons. I've been doing this for so long, but I find when I sit down and take a lesson, or just play with other people and listen, you learn so much from just listening and watching what other people do. Every couple years, I try and come back to that.

You travel a heck of a lot to perform all over. Is there something that's kept you in central Pennsylvania and from moving elsewhere? My family is in central Pennsylvania. My goal was never to be a big rock star and make millions of dollars, not that that wouldn't have been nice at some point. I've been able to make a decent living and be around my family and do what I love to do, so there was never a higher calling for me to move to Nashville or New York or Atlanta and try to capture a record deal.

Shoutouts: The staff at the First Capital (Dispensing Co.). That's one of my favorite places to play and that staff is just great, and the clientele, for that matter. It's one of those rooms that's in my top five rooms to play because everyone is so great in there.


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