“Ship Shake is awesome! Great songs and the whole thing sounds amazing. Vocals and guitar on a scale of 1 – 10? 11! Which is 1 plus 10. Great Googly Moogly!”
– Adrian Belew / Crimson, Bowie, Nails, Zappa, Talking Heads
"God dammit Rob’s a genius! The Ship Shape cd came today. 2/3 in to EVERY SINGLE SONG I’m in love with that song, shining like a jeweled beacon in the darkness and a truth seeker’s “amen”. “Believed” brought tears. The artwork is edgy and beautiful. I pray to the giant god that the world discovers Fetters and makes him a billion dollars for crushing the blues of existence. FUCKING BRILLIANT!!!
(I first discovered Rob’s singing, songwriting and guitar playing in 1987 when a friend played the first Bears record for me. I was an IMMEDIATE fan. Fast forward to 1992 or so. I had co-founded Counting Crows, signed to Geffen records, and we were going to start recording our first record. I went to a club in San Francisco and saw Rob play on stage and have to say that moment shook me to the core – there he was in real life – blowing my mind. If you get a chance to see him in concert, do not miss it!)”
– Matt Malley / Counting Crows
Ship Shake is the antidote to my personal despair… fearlessly embracing optimism (“Turn This Ship Around”, “Not the End”) while recognizing the reality of the dark stuff (“Prophets”, “Dog Is God”, “Scripture”). I appreciate the humor, loud guitars, compassion, and virtuosity of the playing and production. And I appreciate that Fetters doesn’t pander when he writes about trauma.
– Rod Lockwood / music writer, Toledo Blade, Scripps network
“Wow, I’m floored – a masterpiece Rob!! When I listen, I immediately want to listen again! I'll make ya famous. Or at least notorious... 'Turn This Ship Around', GREAT song! I’m playing it this afternoon!
– Dan Reed / Music Director WXPN Philadelphia
Fetters fuckin’ rocks. Ship Shake’s getting lots of love from me on the air. PLUG IT IN.
– John Timmons / WFPK Louisville
“ I LOVE ROB FETTERS. So good. Songcraft perfection.”
– Niki Dakota / Music Director WYSO Yellow Springs
“Rob raises the bar consistently. No exceptions, ALL of it: can’t go wrong.”
– Brian O’Donnell / WVXU Cincinnati
"Re: Ship Shake…today I wish I could un-hear “Prophets” so I could experience the guitar intro anew for the first time. It is a wild creature, not to be approached. The tonal edge of it... the very will of survival from the primordial soup as it snarls at me and thrashes its tail. I've played this track at least 10 times in a row. Years of production are showing here, each release better than the last as Fetters keeps climbing. No reminiscing high school glory days here: this is the real deal."
– Jeffrey Seeman / Nashville guitar god
Rob Fetters has spent decades making records and performing music on the edgy fringe of American power pop. His lyrics deliver “trenchant, ambitious explorations of what it means to be human” (Toledo Blade) with music that encompasses a heady Zen stew of explosive Detroit garage energy and exquisite melodic romanticism – sacred, profane and sometimes very funny. “The songs stick… though the lyrics are so matter-of-fact about bent sex to make me wonder what the really kinky people in Cincinnati are like….”(Robert Christgau). He is regarded by his fans as a guitar hero and brilliant singer/songwriter.
Fetters co-founded the legendary 80’s avant-guitar pop band The Bears alongside singer/guitarist Adrian Belew, which reformed in 2002 to top AAA charts with Car Caught Fire, including a collaboration with King Crimson’s Robert Fripp. Fetters fronted the 80s almost-famous Midwest group The Raisins and the cult underground 90s alt-pop band psychodots. In his wildly diverse career, the “criminally underrated guitarist” (Rod Lockwood / Gannett Media) played with the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra, produced other artists including Dawg Yawp and Afro-Popster Baoku Moses, toured alongside Over the Rhine, shared stages with KISS, Todd Rundgren, Cheap Trick, Billy Idol, and Roger McGuinn. He's cited by MGMT founder Ben Goldwasser as an early influence. He's also an award-winning commercial music composer, having scored hundreds of spots for national ad campaigns.
– Sam Williams, Brooklyn NY
All Fetters' records including bands and productions are available through Apple Music, Spotify, Amazon, etc.
For access to solo albums with lyrics, notes and art use these Bandcamp links:
"They say you should never meet your heroes. You get older and jaded and assume that you were young and easily impressed. When you get the chance and assume you’re going to be disappointed – you realize you were dead wrong. Your hero is somehow even better than you imagined: so talented, just like you remember, but also smart, funny, and kind. We shared a wonderful evening with Rob - and Swany, too! - who performed in our cozy barn for a group of friends and family, with our animals looking on. It was a magical evening that somehow felt intimate and world class at the same time."
– Al Valvano / Seattle, WA
"I've seen Rob play in clubs, but this was a whole new level: I laughed, I cried. Unforgettable. Luminous. Everyone loved it."
– Chris Cady / Columbia, MO
"When my wife and I hosted Rob for a concert at our home, it was without a doubt the coolest music-related event I have ever been to. Ever. Ever. Ever. People laughed. People cried. People felt so thankful to have been in attendance. And they said so, one after another. It was just so fun and gratifying to see my friends getting a chance to experience Rob's mind-boggling talent and life-on-the ledge stories."
– Fred Kraus / Dayton, OH
"Rob Fetters made fans of my friends who just took my word for it. Take my word: you want to experience a Rob Fetters house show!"
– Mason Miller / Reston, VA
"Having Rob at my house was a dream come true. It was the fastest three hours of my life!"
– Mike Dunnington / Orlando, FL
"Rob Fetters' performance was engaging, funny, and an opportunity to see a close up display of raw talent behind the genius of his art. I heard from more than one of my musician friends who came that they were inspired to go home and pick up their instruments."
– Paris Briscoe / Aberdeen, SD
"Rob's private House Concert for us made for an evening that no one in attendance will ever forget! Best party we have ever had, and we’ve had a few! Everyone’s still talking about it, one for the ages! We will most certainly do it again."
– Ray and Carol Smith / Nashville, TN
"It felt, at times, surreal. Looking out the window and seeing Rob in the drive; I remember saying, “Um, honey, Rob Fetters is here.” — for me, it was no different than if it had been Keith Richards or David Byrne stepping up to my front door. He can connect with a room on a personal level and then blow minds as a superlative singer, songwriter and masterful guitarist. It’s emotional to host someone whose music has meant as much to me as anyone’s has for several decades. The experience was unforgettable and all I want now is to do it again."
- Allen Kraus / Columbus, OH
"The most amazing thing happened on our farm in British Columbia, Canada... A Rob Fetters House Concert! Having followed Rob for many years I knew what to expect, but Rob and Swany's visit exceeded my expectations by leaps and bounds... drawing on decades of solo and group performances, Rob put on an evening of beautiful music in our home and he gained a new group of fans here in B.C.. We hope to repeat this experience next Fall."
- Bob Woolsey / Deroche, BC
"The performance...either playing solo acoustic or incorporating backing tracks with his famous Strat, had the audience spellbound by his playing, his voice and his wonderful stories. His sound system, so compact, produced crystal clear sound at the perfect volume. We had over 50 people at our home for the show. Every single person either told me that night or when I saw them at a later date what an amazing experience it was. Lastly, Mr Fetters is a classy guy...he brought flowers for my wife and sent a thank you note afterwards. We are looking forward to hosting Rob again next year."
– Todd Butler / Cincinnati, OH
"Being long-time fans of all things Fetters, I asked Rob to play at our place way up in Minneapolis. To our eternal delight he agreed and it was a fantastic evening. Many attendees weren’t familiar with his body of work but Rob won over the entire crowd and to a person were all blown away by the show. Rob's level of showmanship, musicianship and song-craft is literally world-class. This is not hyperbole in the least. 5 out of 5 stars from the Tienkens!"
– Mic and Julie Tienken / Minneapolis, MN
"The whole thing will go down as one of the best days I've had in 58 years. What a blessing to have my favorite guitar player and my best friends and family under one roof! Boy, sometimes the universe lines up in a way you could never imagine. Most importantly: thank you for figuring prominently in the soundtrack of my life."
– Bob Wilson / Edgewood, KY