An Oregon transplant by way of Central Pennsylvania, Rich Swanger learned harmony and twang via the church pew and his father’s country band. In his early 20's, New Country gave way to Grunge, Alt-Country, and Indie on the way back to an Americana sound drawing from all of the above and then some. Rich adopted the Seahorse moniker in 2004 as a nod to a distinctive, patient and persistent seafarer – a symbol of safe passage and tranquility amongst the unpredictable waters.
Rich creates songs that are contemplative and resonant. His strong voice and pen shepherd voyageurs in search of strength, peace, redemption, and hope. Seahorse released its latest full-length album, The Fire’s Heart in the spring of 2015 on Raven’s Flight Records. Brian Mosher and Billy Johnson, of the PDX band Norman, figured largely in the shaping of The Fire's Heart and when schedules allow, have become indispensable members of Seahorse.
How easy it is to get transfixed by the fire and by the thing fueling the fire. The songs on The Fire’s Heart feature a cast of characters carrying fires within them – jealousy, doubt, love, revenge, obsession, compassion, guilt. These fires sustain while also threatening to consume. These fires are their humanity…and ours as well.
Vocals, Guitar / Rich Swanger
Keyboard, Guitar, Vocals / Brian Mosher
Electric Guitar / Billy Johnson
News & Updates
Pasadena Weekly Review
SEAHORSE, The Fire’s Heart (Ravens Flight): 3 Stars
Conflicted characters and poetic images distinguish this tuneful collection from Seahorse, aka Willamette Valley-based guitarist/songwriter Rich Swanger and whatever players he rings around his sweetly soothing melodies. Songs like “This Little Light” and “Mansion” nod in the direction of folk/Americana forebears like Hank Williams and Bruce Springsteen, minus the former’s twang and the latter’s gravitas. Highlights: “Nightingale,” “Tyndall Rose,” “Anchor” (“I don’t know where I’m going/ I don’t know where you’ve been/ All I know is the boat keeps drifting/ And the fog comes crawling through the bay”). Bliss Bowen - Pasadena Weekly
NO DEPRESSION REVIEW
Seahorse, The Fire’s Heart
This highly listenable second album spotlights Rich Swanger, an excellent Oregon-based folksinger/songwriter, and his capable backup group. Swanger applies his distinctive vocals to a set of self-penned meditations and fairytales. Jeff Burger - No Depression