Welcome to the website of singer-songwriter Markus Rill
and Markus Rill & The Troublemakers

You can catch up on the latest news below. Get to the bio, music, videos, photos, reviews, current gig dates and the blog by using the menu above.
Willkommen auf der Webseite des Songschreibers Markus Rill sowie seiner Band Markus Rill & The Troublemakers.
Die aktuellen Neuigkeiten findest Du hier. Zur Biografie, Musik, Videos, Bildern, den aktuellen Konzertdaten und zum Blog kommst Du über die Menüsteuerung. 


October 16, 2016

Hi guys,

let me get right to it: I won something.
I drove up to Bergheim near Cologne on Friday, wandered into a big auditorium where I was probably the only male person without a cowboy hat and felt a little like a fish out of water.
And then they gave me two awards, one for "Dream Anyway" as Album Of The Year and one for Singer Of The Year. I also played two songs and went over like gangbusters. People made me feel very welcome in the midst of their scene.
You probably know that I don't believe art is about competition and I don't believe winning an award makes me a better singer than I was before ... but the truth of the matter is that I'm pretty dang happy about winning these two awards. It just feels nice. Certainly feels better than being nominated and driving all the way up there and having to drive home empty-handed, I imagine.
Plus, I have to say, the other artists were all nice folks and good musicians. The Lazy Boys from Dresden and Hillbilly Deluxe from near Cologne (doing a Dan Baird song) sounded particularly good.
So thanks to the organizers and the jury for having an open hear for my music. I really appreciate it!

Hope to see y'all soon,

September 19, 2016

Hey everybody,

summer's over - I had a good one with a bunch of cool gigs and some time for relaxation. Hope you had a great one, too.

Recently I received a surprising email telling me I’m a three-time nominee for the German Country Music Award this year (singer of the year, song of the year for “Dream Anyway” and album of the year). The awards ceremony will be in Bergheim near Cologne on Oct. 14 and I’ll be there to play a song or two. We'll see how that goes.

Not a big fan of competition in music (or art in general). Still I recently participated in a Fender Songwriting competition. I didn't win but as a semi-finalist I got two nice videos out of this.

Here's Walk On Water

And here's Broken Puppet

And here are the upcoming gigs:

September 23: Grafenwöhr, Innenhof des Heimatmuseums - solo
October 1: Omnibus, Würzburg - Rill Garthe Oberbeck
October 2: Kulturverein Karlstein - Rill Garthe Oberbeck
October 9: Landesgartenschau Bayreuth - Markus Rill & The Troublemakers
October 14: German Country Music Award – solo appearance
October 15: house concert
October 19: K4, Nürnberg - Markus Rill & The Troublemakers, Patricia Vonne
October 21: Café duu, Flein bei Heilbronn - w/ Annika Fehling
October 22: Limes House Concert w/ Annika Fehling
November 3: Bar 87, Würzburg - w/ Stephen Simmons
November 5: Restaurant "Am See", Erlauzwiesel bei Waldkirchen - Treml Schuier Rill
November 8: Freundlich & kompetent, Hamburg - solo
November 9: Parallelwelt, Hamburg – solo

See you around,


June 1, 2016

We have a bunch of cool summer gigs lined up and hope to see you there!

  • June 10: Bürgergarten Braunschweig - Markus Rill & The Troublemakers
  • June 23: Stattbahnhof Schweinfurt - solo
  • July 2: Jazz in der Aula, Lauda-Königshofen - Markus Rill & The Troublemakers
  • July 10: Jazzfest Idstein - solo with Biber Herrmann, Wolf Schubert-k.
  • July 15: Colos-Saal, Aschaffenburg: Markus Rill & The Troublemakers, Tiger von Äpplerpur 
  • July 20: Strohalm, Erlangen - solo
  • July 22: Bayerische Schanz, Lohr-Ruppertshütten - solo 
  • July 29: Palazzo, Regensburg - Treml Schuier Rill & Band
  • August 5: Podium Café Peter en Leni, Steendam/NL - solo
  • August 7, 4 pm: Grand Café Zuidlaren/NL - solo
  • August 27: Songwriter Festival, Haselünne - solo (and w/ Robert Oberbeck) 

 Also: Here's a nice video of The Hardest Thing To See from my March gig in Frankfurt.

I hope to see you around soon,
April 13, 2016

Listen to the new album now:

Download using the above widget or order a physical CD via email to markusrill [at] yahoo.com


Würzburg, March 22, 2016

Order the new album "Dream Anyway", released on Blue Rose Records now.
It will be in stores on April 15. Here's what you can expect:

Order the album now via email to markusrill [at] yahoo.com
It's 15 Euros.
For orders from outside of Europe paypal payment only, shipping will be added. 

Please include your address!

Here's what I guess in olden days we used to call "a single":


Hope you like it!

The upcoming shows:
  • March 24: Der kleine Mann mit dem Blitz, Frankfurt - solo
  • March 31: Weinkeller Mehling, Lohr a. Main - solo 
  • April 2: PurPur, Wutöschingen-Horheim - solo  
  • April 3: Die Bar, Stuttgart - solo
  • April 5: Old Hippies, Fürth - solo
  • April 15: Feierwerk Orange House, München - Markus Rill Trio, No Snakes In Heaven, Carina May
  • April 22: Brückenkopf, Hanau - Markus Rill & The Troublemakers 
  • April 23: Kellerperle, Würzburg - Markus Rill & The Troublemakers 
  • April 29: Halunkensalon, Hof - solo
  • April 30: Paul-Theater, Straubing - solo
See you there!

Würzburg, January 8, 2016

Hello music lovers,

"Dream Anyway”, the new album by Markus Rill & The Troublemakers, will be out on Blue Rose Records in April 2016. When label head Edgar Heckmann heard the album, he wrote me an excited email: “"Just great, wonderfully varied and very rockin'!" - Exactly my thoughts.

I’m looking forward to starting 2016 with a bunch of shows.
See you there:
January 9: Hide-Out, München - solo
January 15: Blauer Adler, Würzburg - Markus Rill & The Troublemakers
January 21: Klein & Kunst, Weiden - solo
January 29: Krone (Folkclub), Hattersheim - solo
January 30: Piano, Nastätten - solo
February 1: Goldene Krone, Darmstadt – solo

See you around;


Würzburg, October 7, 2015

Here it is, guys, my first-ever crowdfunding campaign.
The album will be called "Something Real" and I think it's going to be real strong. That's why I would love to reach a wider audience with this one. And that's why I'm doing a crowdfunding campaign with a modest goal of 1000 Euros. This money will go mostly into the album's graphic design, into a promotional video and other aspects of promoting the album. Every little bit counts and helps.

So please look around the campaign site, see if you dig any of the contribution perks and be sure to tell all your friends, direct them to the site and share our video in your social media outlets if you're so inclined.

Also: A bunch of gigs are coming up. I'll be further up north than I've been in a good long while.
  • October 10: Kulturfabrik Hildesheim - solo

    Short tour with my friend Annika Fehling:
  • October 14: Café Brooks, Hamburg
  • October 15: Grolsch Song Night, Osnabrück
  • October 16: Café deFiets, Bremerhaven 
  • October 17: Cowboys & Indianer, Hamburg
  • October 18: Cowboys & Indianer, Hamburg
    Then a few dates in East Germany in Berlin with my friend Trailhead:
  • November 5: house concert, Berlin
  • November 6: Sotano, Greifswald - solo w/ Trailhead
  • November 7: Zimmer 16, Berlin - solo w/ Trailhead 
  • November 8: Dodo, Berlin - solo w/ Trailhead
  • November 9: Kastanienwäldchen, Berlin: Living Room session hosted by Mckinley Black
Hope to see you all somewhere out there!


Würzburg, September 16, 2015

Hey guys,

the new album is taking shape!
I'm pretty stoked about the week we spent at 7V Studios in Bockenem last week with The Troublemakers. We recorded basic tracks for 14 new songs. Ten or twelve or maybe all of them will be on the next album that I hope will be released in spring of 2016. We'll probably find a title until then as well.
We had a really good time and I think we are going to get some great results.
You can read more about our studio work in the blog.
Before the end of the month I will start a crowdfunding campaign that I hope will help cover some of the costs for the recording sessions, mix & mastering, cover photo shoot, graphic design, a video EPK and a number of other things related with an album release. I haven't done a crowdfunding campaign before and am a little hesitant about it. It would be wonderful to get your support (but I swear I won't be cross with you if you spend your money on your family, books, albums, refugees or other worthy causes).
Stay tuned for the crowdfunding to start within the next two weeks. You'll find all pertinent info here soon!

Before we went into the studio, there were plenty of beauitiful gigs. The Germanica Folk Festival in Darmstadt was a great event at which played a good set. Reviews (in German) are here:

I also played a trio gig with Maik Garthe and Robert Oberbeck at a beautiful old cinema in Karlstadt-Mühlbach. The review is right here.

Plenty of cool shows are coming up.

This Thursday (Sept 17) I'll be playing solo at the campfire at Bayerische Schanz in Ruppertshütten, a beautiful place out in the forest.
On Friday I'll be teaming up with my fellow songwriters Reverend Schulzz and Wolf Schubert-k. for a show at Schlosskeller Windecken near Hanau.
On Saturday I'll be joining my Aschaffenburg compatriots Boppin' B. in celebrating their 30th band anniversary with many, many guests at the beautiful Amphitheater in Hanau. Gonna be a great night!

Very much looking forward to hosting a songwriting workshop and playing a solo gig at Kulturfabrik Hildesheim on October 9 & 10. Will be staying up there to hopefully finish the mix on the new album and then meet up with my friend Annika Fehling in Hamburg for a short tour of northern Germany. Check the dates below!
  • September 17: Bayrische Schanz, Ruppertshütten - solo 
  • September 18: Schlosskeller Windecken - solo w/ Reverend Schulzz & Wolf Schubert-k.
  • September 19: Amphitheater Hanau - 30 years of rock'n'roll: Boppin' B. with guests
  • September 24: Stattbahnhof Schweinfurt - w/ Frank Halbig
  • October 9/10: Songwriting-Workshop, Kulturfabrik Hildesheim
  • October 10: Kulturfabrik Hildesheim - solo
  • October 14: Café Brooks, Hamburg - Markus Rill & Annika Fehling
  • October 15: Grolsch Song Night, Osnabrück - Markus Rill & Annika Fehling
  • October 16: Café deFiets, Bremerhaven - Markus Rill & Annika Fehling 
  • October 17: house concert - Markus Rill & Annika Fehling
  • October 18: Cowboys & Indianer, Hamburg - Markus & Annika w/ Boogie Augustin
Hope to see you soon, keep in touch,
Würzburg, July 20, 2015

Hi folks,

it's a pretty good summer. Our show at the Würzburg Umsonst & Draußen festival with my friends Robert Oberbeck, Maik Garthe and Hubert Treml was glorious. We played well (considering Maik & Robert met Hubert for the first time backstage) and had a most wonderful audience. Since people wanted to hear more but the festival has a curfew to keep, we played an all-acoustic encore of Dylan's "I Shall Be Released". A great night!

Another big gig this summer was The Troublemakers show at the huge Tollwood festival in Munich (photo by Tilman Haerdle). We went over well in our afternoon slot and got invited to play a show at night next year. This gig was the Troublemakers debut of our new drummer Max Ludwig. Armin Donederer joined us on bass for this gig.
I'm very much looking forward to recording the followup to My Rocket Ship in September. Since Max's family is expecting their first child right around the time I booked the studio date (well in advance of him joining the band), my longtime friend Leonardo von Papp will be playing drums with us. I have a lot of faith in our new material but at the same time it's going to be a bit of a challenge to go in and play these songs in a constellation that's never played together. Plus, of course, there'll be a number of songs the band hasn't even heard yet. Should be interesting.

I've only got one more show before I'll be spending a couple weeks on vacation. And then we'll be back rockin' & recording in late August and September.

The upcoming dates:
  • July 25: Sommerwerft Frankfurt/M - duo w/ Robert Oberbeck
  • August 28: house concert - duo w/ Maik Garthe
  • August 29: Germanicana-Festival, HoffART-Theater, Darmstadt - solo
  • August 30: Sommerkonzerte im Synagogenhof, Veitshöchheim, 18 Uhr - solo
  • September 3: Burg-Lichtspiele Karlstadt-Mühlbach - Rill Garthe Oberbeck
  • September 17: Bayrische Schanz, Ruppertshütten - solo 
  • September 18: Schlosskeller Windecken - solo w/ Reverend Schulzz & Wolf Schubert-k.
  • September 24: Stattbahnhof Schweinfurt - w/ Frank Halbig
And one more thing: On October 9 & 10 I'll be hosting a Songwriting Workshop at Kufa Hildesheim. This should be inspiring to beginners and experienced songwriters alike. So I urge all of you lovely Niedersachsen songwriters to check it out and sign up!

See you around,


 Würzburg, April 23, 2015

Hi guys,

You can now pre-order the book set The Nashville Albums including re-releases of my three Nashville-recorded albums Hobo Dream (2004), The Price Of Sin (2006) and The Things That Count (2009) plus a 4th album entitled Rill Recordings Revisited which includes exclusive new cover versions of friends & colleagues doing classic songs of mine like Hobo Dream, The Things That Count, Straighter Road and many more. The artists included are Todd Thibaud, Joseph Parsons, The Coal Men, Stephen Simmons & Molly Jewell, Lick And A Promise, Robert Oberbeck, Maik Garthe, Annika Fehling, Tom Ripphahn (Hands On The Wheel), Jenny Weisgerber, Copper Smoke, Trailhead, Biber Herrmann, Jan van Bijnen, Hubert Treml und Franz Schuier. They all found inventive, individual ways of doing my songs. You'll really enjoy this, I bet!
Pre-order the set now for 20 Euros including postage and you'll be receiving your copy in late May. Pre-orders and pre-payments are an immense help in financing this production. Please send an email with the subject line "The Nashville Albums" and tell me your postal address. Payment from outside of Germany only via Paypal.
Anybody ordering after May 15 will have to pay 25 Euros.
For those of you already owning the studio albums - there will be a download version of the covers album available at
markusrill.bandcamp.com by mid-May.

Putting this together was a lot of work but also a lot of fun. Squaring this release with GEMA is a lot of work and no fun at all. I'm in the middle of this right now.

Speaking of releases: As I've been telling you repeatedly, we have a lot of strong new material and I really think we'll make a strong new album. Studio time for tracking sessions for the next Troublemakers album is booked for early September. A release in the first half of 2016, maybe pretty much a year from now, seems realistic.

If you want to hear some of these new songs live, come to one of my shows. There's plenty of options in the next few weeks.
This Saturday (April 25) I'll be back in my hometown of
Aschaffenburg at Moments. It's kind of a bar gig. The more of you show up, the more original stuff I'll be able to play. Otherwise I'll dig into my covers repertoire of Elvis, Cash, Buddy Holly (been crazy bout him recently), Dylan, Springsteen, CCR, Stones, you get the picture.

On Tuesday, May 5, a great artist, musician & songwriter is coming to
B&B-Künstlerkeller Würzburg. Michael McDermott is one of thriller author Stephen King's favorite musicians, he's played US late night TV shows, been on stage with Springsteen and around the block in the music biz. "Michael McDermott is one of the best songwriters in the world and possibly the greatest undiscovered rock'n'roll talent of the last 20 years", says Stephen King. Do catch this show! I'll open, we may do a few things together as well.

On Saturday, May 9, I'll be at
Paul-Theater Straubing. Looks like a beautiful place! They invited me after reading the SZ article in January. I'm being introduced as "Rock'n'roll singer Markus Rill" so I suppose I'll slick my hair back and bring my Gretsch along.

On Saturday, May 16, I'll be at
PurPur in Wutöschingen-Horheim. I don't get out this way much. Looks like a great venue in the beautiful black forest and I hope to meet lots of new music lovers down there.

Two days later, on May 18, I'll be playing a Monday night show at
Goldenen Krone Darmstadt. Back when I lived in Aschaffenburg I used to go there all the time, a cool, vintage venue.

On Saturday, May 23, I'll be at the
Schlachthof in Munich, a great venue. Melli Kraus will sit in on cello at this show!

On May 28 - a Thursday - I'll be at
Kulturclub Wiesbaden-Biebric. Lovely folks there who've invited me upon recommendation by Biber Herrmann. My buddy Wolf Schubert-k will open. This should be great!

I'll be back at
Kaffeehaus Eberstadt in Darmstadt-Eberstadt the next day. Had a great gig there last year, should be fun againI'm already looking forward to playing the Umsonst & Draußen Würzburg on June 19 with some of my best friends. Robert Oberbeck, Maik Garthe, Hubert Treml & me will do an in-the-round. This'll double as the release show for The Nashville Albums book set.

See you around, take care,


Würzburg, March 18, 2015

Hey everybody,

I can't help but feel that this year is off to a very good start, musically.
And not only because there are new excellent albums out (or out soon) by my favorites James McMurtry, Gretchen Peters, Steve Earle, Robert Earl Keen and Ray Wylie Hubbard.
Things have also been alright for little ol' me. There was the big article in the Sueddeutsche Zeitung in January which led to packed shows in Munich and more bookings in Bavaria. There's also the box set of my Nashville albums and the bonus album of great friends & artists covering my songs coming along very nicely (and, boy, is it stroking my ego). This beautiful set will be available in June, perhaps May.
And then there was our recent show at Colos-Saal in Aschaffenburg. We had a great audience, we played well and everybody who works at the venue is the ultimate pro and always friendly & helpful. We truly had a great time.

Right now, while the gargantuan SXSW festival is going on in Austin there's also the alternative for those of us not in Texas: CouchByCouchWest (aka CXCW). Artists of all kind send homemade videos to the festival folks and there's lots of great stuff to find there.
I've already received some wonderful feedback for my contribution, a new song (and video) entitled "Vassar Played The Fiddle". Check it out here and feel free to leave a comment. http://couchbycouchwest.com/markus-rill-vassar-played-the-fiddle/

Here's the video: 
Check out the upcoming gigs and come out to see us when you can!

Y'all take care,

Würzburg, January 26, 2014

Here's a new track we recorded recently for a workshop on low-budget recording. Eight tracks, no fancy mics (mostly the good ol' SM 57 & 58). Took only a couple hours including setup & soundcheck. Engineered and mixed by Ali Lionnet.

Munich, January 16, 2014

Hi folks,

I hope your new year has started well. Mine has indeed.
I've already played a few good shows with Hubert Treml & Franz Schuier. Happy to report that our CD "Heart & Soul & Rock'n'Roll" is practically sold out. We have maybe 30 CDs left between the three of us so if you want one, order quickly - per mail to markusrill@yahoo.com (We may do a second pressing but haven't decided yet.)

I think I may have gotten the single most important press boost of my, um, career yesterday. The Sueddeutsche Zeitung, my favorite daily newspaper in all of Germany and without a doubt one of its most reputable, printed a huge article/portrait on me & my music just yesterday.
Click here to read the entire article.

Will be interesting to see if it'll have any effect on my Munich gig at the Hide-Out on Saturday. More gig dates below. Please take special note of March 7 at Colos-Saal Aschaffenburg. Am stoked about that one and I hope we'll get a good crowd. It's a beautiful city, it's one of Germany's finest live music venues so it's definitely worth a trip. We'll be on our best behavior, I promise!

Our main goal for this year is to record another album and hopefully, if all goes well, release it before the end of the year. I'm sure that we have a bunch of strong songs - now all we need is to get them on tape and make 'em sound spectacular :-)

You can get regular updates by subscribing to the newsletter at www.tinyletter.com/markusrill and of course there's always Facebook.com/markusrill.

The upcoming shows of the next few weeks
  • January 17: Hide-Out München - solo
  • January 28: Mini-Bar Aschaffenburg - solo
  • January 30: Burger & Beer (Bronnbachkeller), Würzburg - Markus Rill & The Troublemakers
  • January 31: Café Carty, Gaildorf - Markus Rill duo
  • February 19: Summa Summarum, Frankfurt/M. - solo
  • February 20: Startclub Uffenheim - MR & The Troublemakers and Lick And A Promise
  • February 22: Theater am Neunerplatz, Würzburg (7 pm/19 Uhr) - Treml Schuier Rill 
  • February 25: K4, Nürnberg - solo, opening for Steve Wynn
  • March 6: Pegnitzbühne, Nürnberg (contact me for further info) - Markus Rill & The Troublemakers
  • March 7: Colos-Saal, Aschaffenburg - Markus Rill & The Troublemakers and Hot 'lanta

 Hope to see y'all soon!

Würzburg, October 22, 2014

Hi guys,

things are going well. I had a good trip to Berlin, we're getting very nice reviews for "Heart & Soul & Rock'n'Roll" and I'm looking forward to some cool November gigs.
I'm eager to play some solo shows. I've rediscovered (and rearranged) some older tunes of mine, I've found some cool new covers to do here and there and I have a lot of faith in my new songs.

I haven't been to the Ruhrgebiet for a while. Friday, Nov. 14, at Wurstküche in Castrop-Rauxel will be a good gig, I'm sure.
On my way back south I'll be playing the Mosaik Bar in Frankfurt/M. on Saturday, Nov. 15. My first time at this venue, I hope a lot of Frankfurters will come out.

My friends Stephen Simmons & Dave Coleman from Nashville are over in Europe right now. Do catch 'em if you can! On Thursday, Nov 20, the three of us will be playing an acoustic in-the-round at Tiepolokeller Würzburg. I haven't seen Dave since he sang on The Things That Count in '08. Should be a great night!

Another evening with a number of guests will happen on Saturday, Nov. 22, ar Ratskeller in Sailauf. Peter Schwind will host the Acoustic Evening, I'll be one of the guests. Think this'll be fun.

Do come out!

Munich, September 24, 2015

The new album "Heart & Soul & Rock'n'Roll" by Treml Schuier Rill is available. Order via email to markusrill[at]yahoo.com
Infos on the album below.

See ya,

Munich, September 10, 2014

Hi guys,

there's a new album right around the corner. "Heart & Soul & Rock'n'Roll", a collaborative effort with my friends Hubert Treml and Franz Schuier, will be out by late September.
This is what it looks like:

And this is what it some of it sounds like: Here’s a snippet from the title track, Heart & Soul & Rock’n’Roll

Here’s a snippet from Angel On The Stairs, inspired by Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt.

And here’s one of my favorites, Girl On The A-Train

There’s a few more snippets at https://soundcloud.com/user335716546

All these songs were originally written in German dialect by Hubert and Franz and they're just all-around lovely, excellent songs. I translated them into English and sang them and we recorded some new stuff and we hope you're all going to like it!
There's a little more background info on the album in the blog.  

I’ll let you know about preorder options shortly. Keep checking in here or at facebook.com/markusrill.

On an unrelated note: I recently spent some time at Ohrbrot Studios in Ochsenfurt to videotape some solo performances. Here's Only Fairytales.

We'll be releasing more videos from this session as we go along.

There's a bunch of gigs coming up. Make sure to check the dates section. Hope to see you around in Würzburg, Munich, Weiden, Heilbronn, Regensburg, Berlin and elsewhere these next few weeks.

Stay tuned, keep rockin',


June 24, 2014

Hi everyone,

the UK tour with Annika Fehling was just lovely. Great gigs, met some wonderful people, wrote some good songs - an all-around beautiful experience. Find out more in this blog post.

We've played our first gig with new Troublemakers guitarist Marco Hohner at the Lamboyfest in Hanau recently. We played well, Marco sounded great, the audience was with us - a good gig.

Coming up are our last gigs with Felix Leitner as a full band member (it's not inconceivable that he'll join us here and there in the future or perhaps step in when Marco can't make a date).
On July 4 we're playing the Rockin' Independence Day Festival at Blauer Adler Würzburg with our friends Frank Halbig & The Six-Shooters and Dobbs Dead. Should be a cool hometown gig with an American flavor: Burgers, BBQ & soft drinks and three cool bands.
On July 5 we'll be at the Tsukahara-Festival in Sailauf near Aschaffenburg. We're on at midnight on Saturday till 1.30 or so. Our friends from A Young Man's Journey will also be appearing at this festival so I expect some cross-pollination to happen. Felix will play both those gigs with us! We'll also be joined by accordion player Marius Kraus
On August 3 The Troublemakers will play the lovely Ringparkfest in Würzburg, introducing Marco Hohner.

One more thing: I have a gig in Castrop-Rauxel on November 14 and am looking for another one in the Ruhrgebiet on November 15. Contact me if you're interested in hosting a house concert in Dortmund, Duisburg, Cologne or perhaps somewhere between there and Frankfurt and we'll discuss the details.
May 26, 2014

Hope to see you soon,
May 26, 2014

Hi guys,

a bunch of major news. Let me recommend you subscribe to the newsletter at www.tinyletter.com/markusrill for a monthly email with news about upcoming dates, recording plans and more.
This summer The Troublemakers will work in a new guitarist. Felix Leitner is leaving the band to explore new territory, Marco Hohner will join the band. I'm sad to see Felix go but I'm also stoked about having Marco join. He's an exquisite, versatile guitarist and a strong singer. More on that topic here in the blog.

I'm ready for some dates in the UK (mainly Wales and the London area) with my friend Annika Fehling next week. Here's the dates:

Saturday, May 31: Barn concert, Bontnewydd/Wales
Sunday, June 1: The Parrot, Carmarthen/Wales
Tuesday, June 3: House concert, Wales
Thursday, June 4, The Duke, Deptford/England
Friday, June 5, Morden Arms, Greenwich/England

And: At my recent gig at Colos-Saal Achaffenburg, opening for the Band Of Heathens, we caught a couple of songs on video.
Here's The Hardest Thing To See (winner in the International Songwriting Competition this year):

Here's Late Night Night Sunday Drive:

See you around,

April 27, 2014

Hi guys,

I had a great time teaching songwriting at the MainPop Bandcamp April 13 to April 21. You can read my blog post here.

All the teachers played a few songs together at the end of camp concerts. Here's an all-star take on Straighter Road.  


Here's a real nice live review of my recent gig in Darmstadt.

See you in May!

March  18, 2014

Here's another video from that session at Ohrbrot, Drifting In & Out Of Sleep.

See you at Berlin Guitars, March 29. In Berlin.
 February 17, 2014

Here's a recent performance video of "Late Night Sunday Drive", shot at Ohrbrot Studios.


Jan 27, 2014

The new album "Late Night Drive" is getting wonderful reviews, I had a wonderful start into the new year with a couple acoustic gigs and now it's time to get the band back on stage.

Markus Rill & The Troublemakers will be live on
Feb 13, 8 pm, at Beavers, Miltenberg (w/ special guest Maik Garthe)
Feb 15, 8 pm, at Kellerperle, Würzburg (w/ special guest Maik Garthe)
March 14, 8.30 pm, at Pegnitzbühne, Nürnberg

I'll also be playing acoustic gigs with Frieder Graef, a good friend and a great guitarist/singer/songwriter from Schwabach/Mittelfranken. You know him from his work with Smokestack Lightnin' and the Waikiki Beach Bombers.
Frieder and I will be playing on
Feb 20, 8 pm, atCayman Bar, Schwabach
March 6, 8 pm, at Stattbahnhof Schweinfurt

On March 29 I'll be at Berlin Guitars in Berlin to share a night with my friend Brett Perkins.

Do come out & see us at one of these shows. Download the records at markusrill.bandcamp.com or order a physical copy by sending an email to markusrill [at] yahoo.com

Y'all take care, see you,

Here's the new solo album "Late Night Drive".
You can stream the entire thing and/or download. To order a physical album send an album to markusrill [at] yahoo.com. They'll go out the first week of December.


November 20, 2013

Here's Drifting In & Out Of Sleep from the upcoming solo album Late Night Drive.
All info on the album below.


October 30, 2013

Hi guys,

good news. The solo record is all done. It's called "Late Night Drive" and it features eleven original songs and a Steve Earle cover. It's an intimate record, sparsely orchestrated between acoustic folk and country, atmospheric indie stuff and an homage to the Sun Records sound. All basic tracks were recorded solo live to tape at analoghaus, with me singing and usually playing acoustic guitar but there's one with banjo and two with electric guitar. Then Tom Ripphahn and a few close friends overdubbed a guitar here, a mandolin there, some upright bass, and some harmony vocals. This is a simple, personal album with a bunch of songs that came out real nice. If you've ever liked any of the quieter songs on my albums, you're gonna like this. I think "Late Night Drive" is a fitting title cause a) the album has that kind of atmosphere and b) I worked on many of the songs' lyrics in my mind while I was driving late at night.

You can pre-order the album now for 12 Euros by sending an email to markusrill@yahoo.com
I guarantee you'll have it for Christmas. In fact, I should be able to send out copies the first week of December.

Speaking of December, we're putting on a special CD release.
Two nights at Tiepolokeller Würzburg, a tiny venue that only seats 30 people or so. Felix Leitner (guitar), Marius Kraus (accordeon, piano) and me will be performing the entire album and a few nuggets from earlier albums on December 6 & 7. Make a reservation now at 0931/56163.

Before that, though, there's some other gigs.
Markus Rill & The Troublemakers intend to rock the hell out of Halloween on Thursday, Oct. 31, at Holzwurm Marktheidenfeld. Jochen Thoma, singer for the most excellent Lick And A Promise will join us on a few songs. This may well be the last full-band gig this year so do come out!

Next week, I'll be joining my friend Annika Fehling for a short duo tour. Here's the dates:
  • October 7: Kantine Quakenbrück
  • November 8: Café Podium Peter & Leni, Groningen/NL
  • November 9: Café De Harmonie, Roswinkel (near Emmen)/NL
  • November 13: Wunschlos glücklich, Würzburg
  • November 14: Stattbahnhof Schweinfurt
And on Saturday, November 16, I'll be at the Hide-Out in Munich with my good friend Mo' Highways opening and sitting in with me.
Do come see us at one of these upcoming gigs and preorder the solo album now!
I will soon post some sound snippets or entire songs right here.

Take care of yourselves,
September 17, 2013

Hi guys,

I'm back from a wonderfully relaxing summer vacation and ready for the upcoming gigs and looking forward to finishing up work on my solo album in early October.
Before I left for vacation I sat down at Ohrbrot studios and got filmed while playing a few tunes. In the meantime the audio has been mixed and a couple of videos are ready.

Here's "The Late Great TvZ", my tribute to Townes van Zandt.

And here's a new song I wrote after becoming acquainted with a musician and music lover suffering from Alzheimer's disease on the interwebs. It's called Losing My Mind

Hope you enjoy these videos and I'm looking forward to seeing you at the upcoming gigs!

Rock on,

June 19, 2013

Hiya folks,

summer has finally arrived in Germany - with a vengeance.
We're gearing up for the summer season with a bunch of festival shows.

This weekend will be one of the finest weekends all year to be spending in beautiful Würzburg thanks to the most lovely Umsonst & Draußen festival. We're playing on Friday night between 7.30 & 9.15 pm sharing the gig with Lick And A Promise, a great rockin' band from these parts.

On July 5 The Troublemakers will play at Königsallee in Güntersleben, a most beautiful venue we played a great gig at two summers ago. Do come out for our only full-time full-band outdoors show near Würzburg this summer. Plüschkatapult will open (I don't know the band but their bassist Frank played on my first album so I expect them to be good.)

On July 20 we'll be back at Stoffel in Frankfurt, a most lovely free festival at the Günthersburgpark. Ann Doka and her band will open.
More dates in the live dates section.

I've recently spent another day at analoghaus to add a few overdubs to my solo recordings. They’re coming along nicely. I’ve booked two dates for intimate solo shows in Würzburg in early December. That should be our CD release, I think. (Which would be my second CD release in one year – slightly insane.)

One last thing: A whole bunch of international reviews for Rocket Ship have been coming in these past few weeks. They’re all in the reviews section.

See you around,
Videos: www.youtube.com/gunslingertx
Blog: www.rocknrill.tumblr.com

May 16, 2013

Hi guys,

reviews for My Rocket Ship are still coming in – mostly excellent. Very happy that No Depression in the US – the bible for all things alt.country – have taken note. “Rill shows great depth as a songwriter, bandleader and producer”, they write. Net Rhythms from the
UK, Rootsy from Sweden and numerous German & Dutch magazines and websites are full of praise for the album. Rookie, the new Americana mag from the makers of Rolling Stone, write: “Steve Earle probably would’ve liked to come up with the metaphor that Townes van Zandt could feel his end coming like a migratory bird can feel the coming of the snow. Markus Rill did.”
Youcan read them all in the reviews section.

We’ve also had a great run of live dates including a little band trip east with stops at Berlin’s Bassy Club and Real Music in Lauchhammer. Plenty of solo & duo dates as well, particularly some nice shows with my friend Eva Hillered.
Here’s a video from our
Berlin stand:

I spent a couple of days at analoghaus in Karben to record some solo songs. We’ll add a few overdubs and probably have this solo CD ready later this year. (I don’t think of this as the followup to My Rocket Ship but a little in-between project to tide you over. Good songs, though.)

You may recall that The Troublemakers recorded some songs with Darmstadt songwriter Vanessa Novak a little ago. This EP that I co-produced with Tom Ripphahn at analoghaus is entitled “Bound To Change” and out now!

Plenty of good gigs are coming up this summer. Do check the dates section.

Take care, see you around,

March 1, 2013

Hey everybody,

so the new CD "My Rocket Ship" is out - you can listen in the player to your right.
The reviews are unanimously excellent, feedback from music lovers is wonderful and we're even selling some.

The band is in great shape. We've been playing a bunch of very well-received live shows. Our CD release extravaganza in Würzburg was a thing of beauty. For those of you who couldn't make it to Würzburg and for those who want to remember, please check out this blog post with pictures & video.

We're very much looking forward to taking our little Troublemaker show on the road this Easter weekend.
March 28: private party with Lick & A Promise and Markus Rill & The Troublemakers
between Würzburg and Marktheidenfeld - if you want to come, send an email and I'll send you an invitation. (We have to do it this way because of the silent holiday rule in Bavaria.)
March 29: Bassy's, Berlin
March 30: Real Music, Lauchhammer (near Dresden).

Hope to see you around. It's not often I can bring the band out east.

My song "God Believes" from the new album is a finalist in the International Songwriting Competition. Out of over 20,000 songs overall, this is one of the last twelve in the Gospel/Christian Music category. I never even knew I wrote gospel music. Unless my math skills have deserted me, this is the tenth song of mine that's made it to the finals of this tremendous songwriting competition since I started participating in 2005 or 2006. 

We've also revamped the website a good deal. There's a new bio, we've redone the reviews section (cause that is the part of the site we're putting the most work into and it doesn't get the hits we think it deserves), there's a few new pictures and a new video, the blog offers new stuff every week, and everything else has been redecorated as well.
Do look around, do drop us a line if you feel like it.
And, if you haven't yet, do order the new album with a simple email to markusrill@yahoo.com - or use the download option in the albums section. Everyone's calling it a masterpiece, so what are you waiting for?

Hope to see you soon, be good,

My Rocket Ship is OUT NOW.
Here's our video for Free To Fly

Listen to the entire album in the player on your right, read the reviews in the review section and do come out to the upcoming band shows.

February 8: Frankfurt-Höchst, Schlosskeller - w/ Markus Leidig
February 9.: Würzburg, Kellerperle w/ Frieder Graef & Philipp Hagemann
February 14.: Heilbronn, Red River Saloon w/ Annika Fehling
February 21.: Miltenberg, Beavers
March 28: Holzwurm, Marktheidenfeld w/ Lick & A Promise (acoustic)
March 29: Bassy's, Berlin
March 30: Real Music, Lauchhammer w/ Elizabeth Lee & Cozmic Mojo

And feel free to order the CD via email to markusrill [at] yahoo.com


Hey everybody,

happy new year! Let’s hope it’ll be a good one for all of us.
In fact, I’ve got an idea that’ll bring both you & me happiness.

If all of you order my new CD today, you’ll be receiving some great music and I’ll be able to buy bread & butter for my family.
”My Rocket Ship” will be in stores on February 8 but if you send an email with your order, address and preferred payment (bank transfer or paypal – for international orders paypal only) to markusrill@yahoo.com, you’ll receive the album for 15 Euros (including postage in Europe) before the end of January.
Of course, I honestly feel it the album came out real good but I’m not the only one. A few reviewers who have already received the album have sent me enthusiastic emails proclaiming it my best record yet. I hope you’ll agree.
 You can hear for yourself every week when I introduce a new song from the album at http://rocknrill.tumblr.com
The entire album will be up at markusrill.bandcamp.com after January 21.

 You can also get a live taste of the new songs on
Saturday, Jan. 12, at Casablanca Nürnberg. Frieder Graef, an excellent guitarist, will open & sit in with me. casablanca-nuernberg.de/
On Saturday, Jan. 19, Felix and I will play at Krebsmühle Oberursel. Local band Malcolm will open. http://krebsmuehle.de/kult
On Thursday, Jan. 17,  I’ll be hosting my good friend Hubert Treml at the Songwriter Night in Würzburg’s Wunschlos glücklich. Starts at 7 pm.
In February we’ll be playing some CD release shows with The Troublemakers.
The official one will be on Saturday, February 9, at Kellerperle in Würzburg. Frieder Graef will open and join us. There’ll be more guests. The Kellerperle is a beautiful and relatively new venue below the downtown Mensa. Do get your tickets early.

On Friday, February 8, we’ll be at the Schlosskeller in Frankfurt-Höchst.
On Thursday, February 14, the Troublemakers will be rocking the Red River Saloon in Heilbronn.
One week later, February 21, we’ll be at Beavers in Miltenberg, one of our favourite venues.
Get your order in now! And get your tickets for one of the upcoming shows.

See you soon,

Würzburg, November 6, 2012

Hi guys,

I'm back from the Acoustic Music Cruise through the Mediterranean. It was a great experience.
Specifically for the cruise, my friend Annika Fehling and I recorded an acoustic EP with seven songs, five of which we've written together.
You can listen & download in the albums section right here or order a physical CD for ten Euros (in Germany, extra postage abroad) via email to markusrill[at]yahoo.com

Great news: The new album "My Rocket Ship" by Markus Rill & The Troublemakers will officially be released on February 8, 2013 by Blue Rose Records. Here's the cover:

The photo was taken by Daniel Biscan, cover design by Volker Bahmer.

Here's a video from the cruise. A new song called "Sure Do Miss Her Now" that I debuted aboard the MSC Magnifica in Lisbon harbor.

There's a bunch of gigs yet to come this year and I hope to see you there.

Stay tuned, see you soon,

Würzburg, August 22, 2012

Hi guys,

plenty of good news.
 Blue Rose – my longtime record label – have listened to the new album and like it a lot. “Very strong – a real band effort” is what label head Edgar Heckmann wrote in his email.
The album will be called “My Rocket Ship” and be credited to Markus Rill & The Troublemakers. We’re shooting for a release in January/February 2013. I’m very happy about all of that!

And then there’s plenty of gigs coming up in September. Very much looking forward to some live action after a few quiet weeks in August.

Sept 8 (Saturday) – Sundown Festival in Marburg. I’ll be sharing this gig with my friend Robert Oberbeck with Chris Reiss on bass. Other performers at this festival are Elliott Murphy, Shannon McNally & Will Sexton. Should be great!

Sept 9 (Sunday) – StraMu in Würzburg. Markus Rill & The Troublemakers at Würzburg’s huge street music festival. We’ll be sharing our spot and taking turns witjh Dennis Schütze & his band. Should be a rootsy day.

Sept 14 (Friday) – Stadtfest Würzburg. Markus Rill & The Troublemakers, 5 pm, Main-Post-Bühne. 120 minutes in downtown Würzburg. Fasten your seat belts.

Sept 21 (Friday) – Zimmer 16, Berlin, solo. Have been to Zimmer 16 twice and had a great time. Very much looking forward to returning there. A lovely venue, very nice folks.

Sept 22 (Saturday) – Café Tasso, Berlin, solo. Have played there once before, all-acoustic, no amplification. A great listening audience in a very cozy room.

Sept 23 (Sunday) – house concert, Berlin, solo. If you can’t make it to any of the other Berlin gigs and would like to come, contact me.

Sept 29 (Saturday) – Nacht der Kultur, Schweinfurt, trio w/ Chris on bass and Felix on guitar. A major event with various stages and various goings-on. It looks like we’ll be on twice between 9 and 11.30 pm at Graben 18 -20 (Buchbinderei). Please consult my website or my Facebook site to confirm the details!

By the way, if you have some free time in October and are in the mood for a ten-day cruise ship trip through the Mediterranean – Genua, Lissabon, Barcelona, Casablanca – why don’t you join me & Annika Fehling and some other musicians on the “Akustik & Songwriter Kreuzfahrt”.
Info at http://www.akustik-kreuzfahrt.de

See ya,

Würzburg, July 4, 2012

Hi guys,

ah, that was a nice relaxing stretch of weekends with the family, also known as gig-free weekends. But we were far from idle.
The new album is now mixed & mastered and sequenced. Barring any unforeseen last-minute changes, the music is all done. Now we’re working on the graphic design. The photo shoot is scheduled for tonight. We’ll see how that goes. The album will be called “My Rocket Ship”.
Blue Rose, my long-time label, have received a copy of the record in the last few days and will now take decide whether they like it and, if so, when it would fit into their release schedule. I'll let you know soon as I hear anything.

Until then, I suggest you come out to our live shows where you’ll get to hear some of the songs that’ll be on the upcoming record. They meet all the supreme standards of excellence. :-)

I am sincerely hoping we will have the Live-DVD ready for release this year! Reserve a place for it on your Christmas wish list J

I’m very much looking forward to some very nice upcoming gigs this summer.
This Saturday, July 7, I’ll be at the Songwriter Festival in Bad Kissingen. Besides playing my own set, I’ll act as a “mentor” to my friend Hannes Conrads. We’ll play some songs together and will both be accompanied by guitar slinger Felix Leitner. We’ll go on at 7.30 pm. Plenty of other cool music

On Saturday, July 28, we’re bringing the band to Frankfurt. Markus Rill & The Troublemakers are returning to the Stoffel festival in beautiful Günthersburgpark. Kenneth Minor, a very cool young band, will go on at 6 pm. We will start at 8 pm. I’m very much looking forward to this gig.

A few days later I’ll be back in Frankfurt for a solo gig. August 1 I’ll be at the Sommerwerft. This is another really nice gig in a great atmosphere. Do come!

See ya,


Munich, June 8, 2012

Hi guys,

just one gig in the month of June. I hope we can use this time to make headway on some of our current projects. We recorded 14 songs for the new album and they have now been mixed at 7V Studios in Bockenem. Mastering will follow next week. Would love to see a release of the album later this year but I'm not sure it's going to happen. Early 2013 seems more likely.

But I sure hope we can finish work on our Live DVD in the next few months.

I'm also very much looking forward to teaming up with my friend Annika Fehling for what's bound to be a great experience: An acoustic music cruise ship trip. This is going to happen in October. Come join us on a ten-day trip through the Mediterranean. More info here and at www.akustik-kreuzfahrt.de

If you're planning to visit the Umsonst & Draussen festival in Würzburg June 21 -24 (and why wouldn't you? It's a beautiful festival with great live music, and it's free), be sure to check out the photo exhibition about the Würzburg music scene. I should be in there somewhere.

See you around,
PS: Gigtime on Saturday, June 23. Felix & me at Rock-Café No Limit in Gerolzhofen.


Würzburg, April 18, 2012

Hi folks,

I played a great short tour last week and dropped by at Radio Havenstad in Delfzijl/Netherlands.
Here's my thirty-minute segment with three live songs and a nice interview with host Roel Stäbler.

Listen to all of this on my Soundcloud page

Here's a blog post about last week's adventures.


Würzburg, March 19, 2012 

Hey guys,

it’s been a very busy, exciting and rewarding last few weeks.
We played some great band gigs, we’re continuing to work on our next album and I also recorded some acoustic songs for an EP with Annika Fehling. For detailed info on all of that, please check out the blog at http://rocknrill.tumblr.com
 Last week saw the world’s biggest live music event, South By Southwest (in short: SXSW), in Austin, Tx. For those of us who couldn’t manage to go or who prefer to enjoy music from the safety and comfort of our own couch/bed/desk there is a cool alternative, aptly named Couch By Couchwest (CXSW). So I went out to the woods above Würzburg and shot a video of my new song “Far Too Long Too Far” exclusively for the CXCW festival. Here’s the video:

If you like it, feel free to hit the "like" button at http://couchbycouchwest.com/markus-rill-far-too-long-too-far/

Happy news: My song “Fast Forward” has made it to the final round of the International Songwriting Competition 2012. It is – according to jurors - one of the finest 14 songs submitted in the Americana category. There have been 16,000 song submissions altogether, so there’s certainly been healthy competition. I feel very lucky to have been honored this way once again. Since 2005, a total of nine of my songs from various different albums made it to the finals of this prestigious contest. And that means, they’ve been listened to by the most wonderful array of judges including Tom Waits, Rosanne Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Ray Davies, Robert Earl Keen, Bonnie Raitt and many more over the years. Time for these people to start covering the ol’ Rillster, don’t you think?
You can listen to all of this year’s finalists – very many of them well worth listening to - at www.songwritingcompetition.com and cast your vote for your personal favorite in the People’s Choice category, if need be, once a day.

I’m very much looking forward to an amazing week in October. I’ll be going on an Acoustic Music Cruise through the Mediterranean playing concerts and giving workshops and seeing Genova, Barcelona, Casablanca and other cool places. Aboard the ship with me will be Annika Fehling, Marc Tyson and Joshua Carson. Sounds great, doesn’t it? It’s affordable, too.
Check out the info at www.akustik-kreuzfahrt.de

The next couple weeks will be spent in the toolshed with more work put into all the current projects (album, live DVD, duo EP, songwriting) before I venture out on the road again. There’ll be a solo gig in Schweinfurt in late March followed by a solo tour the week after Easter. In late April I'll be sharing two gigs with eminent NY songwriter Nels Andrews, a brother in arms.
The dates:
March 29 (Thursday): Brot & Spiele, Schweinfurt – solo
April 10 (Tuesday): Majik Lounge, Bad Kreuznach – solo
April 11 (Wednesday): Kantine, Quakenbrück – solo
April 12 (Thursday): Grolsch Song Night, Osnabrück – solo (with Johanna Zeul, Markus Rohmann)
April 14 (Saturday): House concert, Delfzijl/NL – solo
April 15 (Sunday): Radio appearance on Havenstad FM – solo
April 25 (Wednesday): Ludwigs Bar & Café, Nürnberg – with Nels Andrews (USA)
April 26 (Thursday): Songwriter Night at Wunschlos glücklich, Würzburg – w/ Nels Andrews (USA)
May 4 (Friday): Schlosskeller, Frankfurt-Höchst – solo w/ Mathew Albert
May 5 (Saturday): Folk-Up Festival, Würzburg – solo

You can easily stay on top of things by following me on Twitter (www.twitter.com/markusrill) or hooking up on Facebook (facebook.com/markusrill).
And, of course, sign up to the monthly newsletter right here

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See you around, keep in touch,


Würzburg, February 8, 2012

Hiya guys,

we’re on a roll and I hope you are, too.
I’m very happy to report that our little stint in the studio last week went fabulous. The Troublemakers played great, we laid down 14 tracks that already sound real good and are pretty much finished. Some more, some less. We’ll have a few guests come in and do overdubs in the next few weeks and voila, we’ll have a new album ready soon – when it’ll be released is a whole 'nother question, though. Right now I’m focused on finishing the recordings.

Here’s a short video from the studio:

Here’s a blog post.

For those of you asking about the DVD ... right now it’s taking a backseat to the album. I’m hoping to have a nice DVD release show this summer.

Coming out of the studio we are now eager to play some band shows.
Here’s the dates for Markus Rill & The Troublermakers in the next few weeks:

•  February 23, 2012: Beavers, Miltenberg - w/ Lick And A Promise
•  February 24, 2012: Glattbacher Mühle, Glattbach - w/ Magic Ed Combo
•  February 25, 2012: Bronnbachkeller, Würzburg
•  March 8: Red River, Heilbronn - w/ Lick And A Promise
•  March 9:  By Harry, Mespelbrunn

We hope to have some guests sit in with us at some of these dates. Certainly, the LNAP boys and Magic Ed will jam with us, hopefully pianist Jan Reinelt and/or fiddler George Bähr will join us us here or there.

Please get your tickets soon, particularly for the Bronnbachkeller Würzburg gig!

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See ya,
Videos: www.youtube.com/gunslingertx
Blog: www.rocknrill.tumblr.com


January 7, 2012

I’m not really in a retrospective mode right now. I’m very much looking ahead and looking forward to going in the studio with the guys in less than four weeks. We have a bunch of great songs that we’re planning to record. Then we’ll get some friends in to overdub some cool stuff and then hopefully we’ll have ourselves a new record.
Also still hoping to the DVD to be all done for our February string of gigs.
And looking forward to other cool stuff on the horizon like going on an acoustic music cruise in October, recording some songs with Annika Fehling in March, maybe trying to book some UK gigs for August. There’s always more things that I plan to do than I actually get around to doing but, hey, I’m glad I still have ideas and I’m as excited about the music life as ever, if not more so.

Still, a little evaluation of 2011 can’t hurt. After all, I’ve seen “Wild, Blue & True” on a few lists of people’s favorite albums of 2011 and that makes me feel pretty good. I also got the accounting statement from Blue Rose about sales numbers in the first half of the year and – considering the album was officially released in March – those numbers are wonderful. Maybe I am getting somewhere finally.

Some of 2011’s highlights were:

  • the Visby Songwriter Festival
  My friend Annika Fehling invited me to perform at her festival in Visby on the beautiful island of Gotland/Sweden. I brought the entire family and had a grand time playing a few shows, staying with Annika, her husband Arne and their daughter Mira and in Stockholm at Eva Hillered’s house, exploring beautiful Gotland & Stockholm with my wife and our little daughter (at Pippi Longstocking Park) and giving a fruitful songwriting workshop with lots of the festival’s other performers in attendance
  •   The band summer
Summer is often a slow time cause there’s no club gigs. But this year was a great summer for The Troublemakers and me. We played a whole bunch of really cool gigs. Very special was the Königsallee gig that we shot for our upcoming live DVD.
  • Berlin with Annika Fehling
Spent a few days in Berlin this September sharing shows with Annika. We’ve done quite a few duo gigs and tours by now so it’s always fun to get together and play on each other’s songs. We wrote a very nice new one.
  • Finding booking help
I’ve finally found some friendly, competent, motivated booking help. Yay! We’re almost all booked for the spring.
  • The Songwriting Workshop for Gitarre&Bass

    Started writing a regular 1 ½ to 2-page songwriting workshop/column for German musicisan magazine Gitarre & Bass a few months ago. I think five or six instalments of the series must’ve run so far. It’s interesting and a lot of fun and it gives me some nice exposure. Been getting good & interesting feedback on this as well. I hope to continue doing this for a long while – and maybe turn this into a book on songwriting at some point.

There were many more great gigs along the way (together with Markus Leidig and Robert Oberbeck) and some not so amazing ones - but that’s what makes the good ones stand outI expect 2012 will bring more gigs and more of everything.
I hope we’ll play more band gigs and will have occasional guests sitting in (piano player Jan Reinelt, maybe a fiddle player) and joining the band. And, like I said, I have a ton of new songs that I really like and am gertting ready to start recording. Should be a good year! I hope to see you all along the way!

Happy 2012,
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November 24, 2011

Been keeping very busy these last few weeks playing a whole bunch of gigs.
Had a wonderful time opening for and meeting the fantastic Madison Violet. They're real nice people and they sound heavenly. Been playing their CDs a lot recently.

Some great fun sharing gigs with Reverend Schulzz and my buddies Robert Oberbeck and Markus Leidig on my "exploring Hessen" weekend Nov 4&5.

Big news about The Troublemakers: Great piano & organ player Jan Reinelt has joined our ranks. We will stay play gigs as a four-piece here and there but Jan will join us when- and wherever it's doable.
His debut appearance with us was a real good gig we shared with Lick And A Promise, a badass Stones-style rock'n'roll band, on Nov 19 at das boot in Würzburg.

Got a couple more gigs lined up this year.
I hope to see you on Friday, December 2, at Salute, a very nice club in Weiden/Oberpfalz and on Thursday, Dec 8, at Ludwigs Café & Bar in Nürnberg with Stan Silver. Stan and I are hoping to establish a songwriter series there.

Have a great pre-Christmas time, folks.
Stay safe, keep in touch,
October 27, 2011

Plenty of stuff happening.
Found a new songwriting partner near my hometown recently and it's a lot of fun working with him. It's interesting how it's a different feeling or process with everybody that you write with. We have two good ones done and a third one cooking.

I've also found some booking help. I think that's going to be a huge help. We're just starting to work together but I think this'll work real well.

We're making plans to start recording some new stuff in January. Read the blog post and chime in on the discussion of which direction you'd like to see this going in.

Coming up are a whole bunch of nice gigs.
On Thursday, Oct 27, Chris Reiss (on bass) and me will be at the Atlantis movie theater starting at 11 pm. That sounds like it couild be either very cool or a bust. Please come out and make it the former!
On Friday, Oct 28, we're doing our thing at the Hide-Out in Munich. Brand-new songs, classics and some from in-between.

A few days later, Wednesday, Nov 2, I'll be opening for great Canadian folk rock duo Madison Violet at Kamnmerspiele Ansbach. I'll be starting at 7.40 pm sharp, the band will go on at 8.15. This should be a great show!
The gig originally scheduled at Stadtcafé Hünfeld for this date has been pushed back to January 25, 2012.

I'm looking forward to sharing some gigs with friends.
On Friday, Nov. 4, it'll be the honorable Reverend Schulzz and me at Brückenkopf Hanau.
On Saturday, Nov 5, it's local hero Robert Oberbeck, guitar slinger Markus Leidig and me at Molly Malone's in Marburg.
On Saturday, Nov 19, it's Markus Rill & The Troublemakers with my new buddies Lick And A Promise at das boot, Würzburg.
On Thursday, Nov 24, I'll be welcoming my friend Trailhead from Berlin to the new Songwriter Series at Café Wunschlos Glücklich in Würzburg.
On December 2, I’ll be playing solo at Salute Weiden. Glad to be back in the Oberpfalz region!
On December 8, 2011 it'll be Stan Silver and me at Ludwigs Bar & Café in Nürnberg - possibly the start of a new Songwriter Series. We'll see how it goes.

And somewhere squeezed in-between I’ll be seeing Dylan & Knopfler live.
It sure sounds like a fun & busy next couple of weeks.

Speaking of busy ... we're still working on finishing the live DVD. It's coming along fine and it'll turn out real good but since we're not a big budget operation and I'm depending on people to help me out in their spare time, it's taking its own sweet time. We're doing our best but I can't guarantee we'll have this DVD ready for Christmas. Ultimately, we'd rather release a real good product than a rush job. That said, we may yet be able to get this thing done within the next few weeks.

See you,

September 30, 2011

I recently spent a few days in Berlin gigging with Swedish songbird, my friend Annika Fehling.
A lovely Berlin music blogger came out to two of our shows.
She liked the first one
But she really liked the second one
I admit that we were warmed up on the second night. We also had a great show the following night at Café Tasso.

Here's a video from the last encore which we did all-acoustic. Annika and our mutual friend, Berlin singer-songwriter Mckinley Black joined me on this song and made up some beautiful harmonies on the spot.

Before leaving for Berlin I played a duo show with Troublemakers bassist Chris Reiss at the Disharmonie in Schweinfurt. That was a wonderful gig and we got a very good, very knowledgable review in the Schweinfurter Tagblatt

I'm also very excited about the song Annika and I wrote together on our last day in Berlin. We always find some good stuff when we get together. This new one is named "For A While".
I hope to see you at my upcoming gigs, Oct. 6 at Rohremeisterei Schwerte and Oct. 7 at Irish Pub in Gießen.

See ya!

September 8, 2011

I think I'm gonna change the way we handle this news page. New reviews and other stuff will now be linked here first. Of course, they'll also go into the reviews section but the stats show me that the reviews section - though most often updated and filled with new content - is not your favorite place to cruise around here.

First up, here's a video from our gig at Königsallee Güntersleben on Aug 21. This is not from the forthcoming DVD but from an independently operating bootleg video crew. Pretty cool, though.

And here's an album review from UK singer-songwriter-musician David Rozzell

Here's a podcast recorded in German language in Schweinfurt on Tuesday, Sept. 6.
A conversation with Flo Kohl & Alexander von Halem

And here's a video from last week's gig in the Hofkeller below Würzburg's beautiful Residenz building.

August 31, 2011

Ten days ago we played a great gig that was filmed and recorded for a possible future DVD release. The gig went well and I think we'll make this work. We're hoping to have the DVD available in time for Christmas.

There's a blog post about this gig and some more about other stuff (new reviews, too) at rocknrill.tumblr.com

A bunch of gigs are about to come up, too.
Friday, Sept 2, Markus Rill & The Troublemakers at Residenzkeller Würzburg
Saturday, Sept 10, Markus Rill & Markus Leidig, Stadtfest Lauterbach
Thursday, Sept 22, through Sunday, Sept 25, it's Annika Fehling and me in Berlin at art.gerecht, Zimmer 16, Café Tasso and 7 Stufen.

See you around,

August 16, 2011

There's a nice open air gig coming up this Sunday, August 21, in Güntersleben near Würzburg. Markus Rill & The Troublemakers will be playing a nice long set that will be filmed with plans for a DVD release. König & Seeberger will open at 6 pm, we'll go on around 7 pm. Do come out to http://www.koenigsallee.cc

More upcoming gigs in the dates section!
Fri, Sept 2, Würzburg, Hofkeller
Sat, Sept 10, Stadtfest Lauterbach (solo)
Sept 22 to 25 Berlin dates with Annika Fehling

New videos & pictures in the blog at http://rocknrill.tumblr.com

Also: Read my first songwritiing workshop column is in the current issue of Gitarre & Bass magazine.
See ya!

July 25, 2011

A ton of gigs are coming up in August and September in Frankfurt, Aschaffenburg, Würzburg, Berlin and elsewhere. Please check out the "Dates" section.
If you can, come by the Summertime Open Air in Güntersleben (near Würzburg/Germany) on August 21. We're planning to shoot a live DVD there so we need y'all to look and sound good.

Scroll down for a free download of my six-song solo opening set for the Band Of Heathens at Colos-Saal Aschaffenburg on May 2.

Take care,

June 23, 2011

Here's something brand new

On May 2, 2011, I opened for the Band Of Heathens at Colos-Saal in Aschaffenburg/Germany. My 6-song solo set was recorded with good quality audio.

Recorded by Uli Teute

You can download this for free but you're welcome to leave a few Euros or Dollars as well if you're so inclined.


Würzburg, June 15, 2011

Hi guys,

the last weeks have been good for me – I hope they’ve been good to you, too.
Had a great time on a short three-day run with the band (find out all about it by reading the blog entry at http://rocknrill.tumblr.com/post/6050106052/three-days-on-the-road) and have been receiving plenty of international reviews for “Wild, Blue & True” recently. I’m translating them and putting them up here – but here’s a particularly good one from the UK http://www.netrhythms.co.uk/reviews.html#markusrill

Looking forward to a great summer with a bunch of cool gigs.
The first one is a private gig in Berlin coming up on Friday, June 24. This is a house concert won by a Blue Rose Records fan in my record label’s 15-year anniversary festivities.

Two days later, Sunday, June 26, Markus Rill & The Troublemakers will play for our hometown crowd at Würzburg’s best invention since Dirk Nowitzki, the Umsonst & Draussen festival. We’ll hit the Kulturzelt stage on Sunday at 7.30 pm. (http://www.umsonst-und-draussen.de/programm.html)

The week after that I’ll be performing and also hosting a workshop at the International Songwriter Festival in Visby/Sweden. I am not sure of the exact time(s) that I’ll be on stage between July 1 and July 3. I think I’ll play more than one set. My workshop on “Storytelling In Songwriting” will be on Sunday, July 3, between 1 and 3 pm. Please look for more detailed info at http://www.swedensingersongwriterfestival.se.

Then we’ll take a few weeks off before we’re back with a vengenance in late July and August.
One date I’d like to ask you to take note of:
If you can, please come out to Königsallee in Güntersleben near Würzburg on Sunday, August 21. It’s a wonderful venue (open-air if possible but the gig can easily be moved indoors) and we’re planning to shoot footage for a live DVD there. So we need all of you to be there and sing along (www.koenigsallee.cc).

One more thing: We recently debuted a couple new tunes, one of them was filmed and is up for your listening and videographic pleasure at http://rocknrill.tumblr.com/post/6385220206/the-facts-about-my-life

Keep in touch, order your copy of “Wild, Blue & True” via email or at an upcoming gig,
see ya,


Würzburg, April 25, 2011

Hi guys,

hope you all had a great Easter weekend.
I was out in the country with my baby and my little daughter and my Dad enjoying the sunshine.

In case you haven't heard: My new album "Wild Blue & True" is out & the reviews are very positive. Plenty of reviewers are calling it my best album yet.

Just a few review snippets:
"This is music with beautiful quiet moments in a transparent production – great!" - Gitarre & Bass
"Rill delivers another exquisite song collection. Roots rock with a strong acoustic bent, authentic storytelling and credible soul searching" - Good Times
"Pure, first-class Americana "  Thüringer Allgemeine
(read the full reviews on this site)

And I admit I'm very proud that wonderful Grammy-winning artist and exquisite songwriter Rosanne Cash, Johnny Cash's daughter, has congratulated me on the album, called it " a great work" and my lyrics "miles ahead of the generic Americana-type stuff".

In other words, guys, in case you don't own the album yet or you feel your friends and neighbors would enjoy it also, drop me a line at markusrill@yahoo.com and order the album - or get the twofer "Wild, Blue & True" and the EP "Makin' Trouble" with more songs from the album sessions.

And I hope I'll see you at one of my upcoming live gigs:
This Thursday, April 28, I'll be playing a solo show at Brennbar Oberursel - this is within easy reach for all you music fans from the Frankfurt area.
On Monday, May 2, I'm glad to be in my hometown of Aschaffenburg to open for the fabulous Band Of Heathens at Colos-Saal, one of Germany's finest live music venues.
On Thursday, May 12, I'll be at Kulturwerkstatt Sonthofen to share the night with Mckinley Black from Berlin and my friend Camille Bloom from Seattle.
And the last weekend of May will see three Troublemakers gigs.
Thursday,May 26, at Red River, Heilbronn.
Friday, May 27, at By Harry's in Mespelbrunn (between Aschaffenburg and Würzburg)
and Saturday, May 28, at Immerhin Würzburg with Andreas Kümmert opening.

See you around,


Hey everybody,

welcome to the new website. It was time for a relaunch and a major overhaul. This new site should be a lot easier for me to update.

The big news, of course, is that my new album "Wild, Blue & True" is out on Blue Rose Records, released on March 4, 2011. And it's pretty damn good. The first incoming reviews are very positive with talk of "his masterpiece", a "very versatile, mature record" and so on and so forth. Read all about it in the reviews section.
You may order the album by sending an email to markusrill@yahoo.com or you can download it in the albums section or using the widget on the right.

Also, I'm very very happy with my current band The Troublemakers and it's shaping up to be a good year with a bunch of gigs already lined up throughout the year, including a number of band gigs this summer. See "dates".

Everything else on this site should be pretty self-explanatory. The visuals section is divided into photos and videos as you can see.
The blog link will lead you to rocknrill.tumblr.com where I'll try to post something new at least once a week. Currently, with reviews coming in every day, probably even more frequently.

Look around & enjoy the new site and please get in touch by sending an email,