Primary Instrument: Guitar, steel
obert Randolph & The Family Band is a multicultural American funk and soul band composed of Robert Randolph, Marcus Randolph (drums), Danyel Morgan (bass), and Jason Crosby (organ). Frontman Robert Randolph was trained as a pedal steel guitarist in the House of God Church, Keith Dominion, and makes prominent use of the instrument in the band's music. Randolph a native of Maplewood, New Jersey began playing the steel guitar in the House of God Church, which used steel guitars in worship services. Sacred Steel as it is called is used in many African American Pentecostal style churches and while playing at a sacred steel convention in Florida Randolph was discovered. The group's sound is inspired by successful 1970s funk bands such as Earth, Wind & Fire and Sly & the Family Stone, another multicultural band comprised of former members of the Church of God in Christ. Randolph himself has also stated that his main influence as a guitarist is Stevie Ray Vaughan.
The first Robert Randolph & the Family Band album, Live at the Wetlands, was released in 2002. The band released their studio debut, Unclassified on August 5, 2003. They attracted the attention of Eric Clapton, and have subsequently toured as a supporting act with the British blues guitarist. Clapton also featured on the new album Colorblind on the track Jesus is Just Alright
Before releasing albums with The Family Band, Randolph was selected by avant-jazz organist John Medeski to join him and the North Mississippi Allstars on their 2001 jam project, The Word.
In September of 2003 Randolph was listed as #97 on Rolling Stone's 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time list.
In 2002, they were hired by ABC to make the network's new NBA theme song. The song, We Got Hoops, was only used for three telecasts, though it was used throughout both the NBA and WNBA seasons during promotions for both leagues.
In 2005, Randolph, along with Kirk Hammett of Metallica, guested on the song Trinity on Santana's album All That I Am.
The third album, Colorblind, was released October 10, 2006. The song Ain't Nothing Wrong With That is used on many commercials for NBC. The band was contracted by ABC to perform and shoot a video for Thrill of It as an introduction for Saturday Night Football for six games in the 2006 season.