Ross Flora reveals the story why the “Creek Ran Red”

LA Music Review | Art, stories and advice

Upbeat, edgy and totally profound!

Rating: 5 out of 5.
Photo by: Brittany Hope Hambrick

Hi Ross, welcome back to LA Music Review! Tell us a little bit about you and your music?

Ross Flora is a seasoned, multifaceted singer and musician out of the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia.

Growing up just south of Roanoke, he was surrounded by strong influences in both R&B and Bluegrass. Ross’ songs emulate the tasteful guitar parts and bold emotional lyrics of the southern rock genre.

In 2022, Ross released his first debut single ‘Cannonball’ to overwhelming reviews from the southern rock and outlaw country communities, naming him “The Golden Age of Rock n’ Roll featuring a Southern Flare”. Following his single in July 2022, Ross released his first EP, Shoulders of Giants. In March 2023 Ross released his project with world renowned Blackbird Studios, ‘Part of Me’. Ross continues to play across the USA as a solo artist, and keeps a Nashville residency at multiple venues.

Photo by: Brittany Hope Hambrick

Congrats on the release! What was your inspiration when you were writing this project?

Released September 8, 2023. “‘Creek Ran Red’ is about a legendary standoff that happened just southwest of my hometown during the prohibition era between a bootlegging outfit and the feds. My dad told me the story as a kid, and it always seemed like such a profound piece of our local history, like our own OK Corral just a few miles down the road. If you’ve ever seen the movie Lawless, it’s based on the same story.”

What lessons would you like to impart with your audience?

“I wrote ‘Creek Ran Red’ to pass on a story as it was told to me.

I’m not the first or the last to write a song about bootlegging, but I tried to put myself and the listener in the character’s place. A good man that has been living on a razor’s edge just to provide, knowing that the laws of man have caught up to him, not asking God to intervene, but just asking for heaven not to watch what must be done in his final acts,” adds Ross.

Start streaming “Creek Ran Red” here:

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Anything else we should know about it?

“The first time I heard the words ‘they said that the creek ran red’ from my dad, it was obviously shocking. I grew up in church and went to a Christian school, so the story of what happened there almost seemed like some apocalyptic plague; the pointless loss of life over greed and a prohibition law that lasted all of 13 years seems like such an earthly failure that, to me, certainly fits the bill for one.”

So much of what people know about that side of Appalachian culture is glamorized and nearly pure fiction; I wanted to write about a real story. While a few people ended up wealthy from making and running Moonshine, for most, it was a last resort just to survive and the only option to keep their families fed.

The saying ‘folks too poor to feel the Great Depression’ was absolutely true in Appalachia at that time. My grandpa is rolling over in his grave, knowing I wrote a song about bootlegging, but my family line was lucky enough to have a few chickens and a garden during that time and were able to scrape by when so many weren’t,” says Ross.

Future releases? Upcoming events?

Ross skillfully blends different genres of music in his songwriting and self-production, resulting in his unique and distinct sound. He recently played the NXNE Music Festival in Toronto, Canada. On Sunday, November 11th, he will be a featured artist for the Music City Cares Benefit Show, which is the biggest Veterans Day celebration in the country.

Connect with Ross:

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