Dwight Twilley, Legendary Power Pop Singer and Songwriter; Talks Leon Russell

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In 1974, Dwight Twilley was signed to Shelter Records and returned to his hometown of Tulsa Oklahoma. Once in Tulsa, Twilley and his bandmate, Phil Seymour, recorded at The Church Studio and had great connections and relationships with Leon Russell, Denny Cordell, and artists like Tom Petty. Dwight shares his insight in regards to the public image Leon Russell projected versus who he really was in person as well as his strategy behind his studio in the 1970’s.

Please enjoy this LEGENDS video of the singer, songwriter, and artist Dwight Twilley, as he shares more stories of his time recording at The Church Studio. Finally, can you identify what from the Church Studio that Dwight is using in his own recording studio today?

Rusty Russell

Rusty Russell spent his high school and college years in Wichita, Kansas, attending Wichita State University on a trumpet performance schollarship. His dabbling on guitar became an obsession, and he left school for a years-long stint in Denver, playing in club bands and teaching guitar privately. After a brief return to Kansas, Rusty answered a call for a road gig based in Nashville. From 1984 until his move to Tulsa in 2019, Rusty worked in Nashville as a guitarist and bassist on tours, in clubs, and in recording studios. He also built careers in journalism (a decade as Nashville Editor for Guitar Player Magazine, writing hundreds of articles for GP and other national publications) and photography. Rusty was a contract shooter for Getty Images, and also shot dozens of album/CD and magazine covers & articles. His musical road work includes touring with artists like Louise Mandrell, George Fox, Blues legends Charles “Wigg” Walker and Johnny Jones, and The Burrito Brothers (on bass). After thirty-six years in Nashville, Rusty moved with his wife, Lynn, to Tulsa to be near his extended family. He’s currently busy with club work, a few recording sessions, and teaching advanced guitar students.

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1 Comment

  1. Joe Johnson on June 17, 2021 at 4:01 pm

    My daughter Emily recorded a couple songs at Dwight’s studio several years ago. He was great to work with and a very cool guy. She was only 16 at the time but really enjoyed it. I had an awesome time hearing some great stories about the Tulsa music scene back in the 70’s.

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