Music has been a central force in the life of Rich Branham. He began playing while in the 6th grade, when he first tried his hand at drumming. Very soon thereafter, he heard the guitar work of Eric Clapton (then with Cream) and said to himself: “That’s what I want to do”.

In addition to Clapton, Rich credits Jimmy Page, Jimi Hendrix and Ritchie Blackmore as being among his early influences, though he states: “I’m just a big fan of good guitar playing, regardless of style”.

In addition to playing, Branham has been a guitar instructor for over 37 years, passing his passion for the instrument to his students for his entire adult life. He is familiar as well with bass guitar, keyboards, fiddle and mandolin.

Though his early years were influenced by some of the greatest “rock” guitarists in history, the majority of his performing career has been spent on the local country music scene. He began with a group called “The Fender Cowboys” and moved on to “Dixie Flyer”. Later in his country music career, he played for “Tempted” and “Restless”, who had the opportunity to open for name acts such as Alan Jackson and David Allen Coe.

Live performance has always been Rich’s primary focus, though he was involved with the recording of “Woke up with an angel”, a song written by his nephew, Dan Hathy, which received airplay in Europe.

Somewhere around 2004, Rich felt that country music had changed, shifting away from good guitar playing and developing a more pop oriented direction. This “shift” caused him to explore other options and ultimately inspired him to return to his roots.

In addition to working with Face Value, Branham continues to work as a guitarist in “Area 51” and the contemporary Christian rock group “Soul Purpose”, whose members have been friends and band mates with Rich for many years.

Rich sums it up by saying, “I like to play, and I’m having a ball”