Connect
To Top

Check out Eddie Cunningham’s Artwork

Effective expressively in music and art….and considered a double threat! A very accomplished musician and artist.

Eclectic is an understatement when describing the singing, songwriting and song styling talents of Los Angeles recording artist and producer Eddie Cunningham, winner of the 8th Annual Independent Music Award for his heart blasting power gospel hit, “Jesus Is More Than A Name.”

Conceived and recorded as part of the triple Grammy Award nominated Gram Parsons Notebook tribute CD, “Jesus Is More Than A Name” has continued winning awards and topping Americana and Faith Based charts ever since – with no sign of stopping.

Prior to winning the Independent Music Award for Best Gospel, “Jesus Is More Than A Name” earned Cunningham a spot on the three time Grammy Award nominated record The Gram Parsons Notebook, Top honors at The Southern California Music Award for Best Gospel, two nominations by The Los Angeles Music Awards for Best Gospel and Best Male Vocalist, The West Coast Songwriters International Award for Top Gospel, Honorable Mention in The Billboard World Song Contest, inclusion on the Music Row Top Ten Americana CD for The Gram Parsons Notebook, Top Christian Artist on Independent Gospel Online Radio and first place on Broadjam.com’s Top Ten Country list.

“Producing The Gram Parsons Notebook was a total joy and an experience I’ll never forget,” says Grammy Award winning producer Carl Jackson. “Eddie pours his heart and soul into his performance on ‘Jesus Is More Than A Name’ and I’m proud to be a small part of the emotion captured on record forever for all to hear.” At the recording session, blind piano player Johnny Neel complimented Eddie’s performance by saying, “You sing like a blind man, Brother”

Authenticity and diversity prevail in the music of Eddie Cunningham. From soulful country ballads to rock and honky-tonk, from love songs to hillbilly trucker music, from pure Americana to soul and r&b, from down home gospel to Native American tribal rock, from alternative country to bluegrass to Latin urban and back again, Cunningham – amazingly – does it all justice with 15  CDs to date and inclusion on several various compilations Eddie’s songs are packed with outstanding original melodies, emotionally honest lyrics and his signature blast-to-the-heart soulfully beautiful vocals.

Born in multi-ethnic, multi-racial East Los Angeles to a hard working family with Scots/Irish and Native American roots, Cunningham grew up with an appreciation of musical, cultural and spiritual diversity. While his personal roots are Christian and Native American, he has an all-inclusive spirituality and respects all religions. He is as likely to be found in a Baptist church as in a Buddhist temple, a Jewish synagogue or a Self-Realization Fellowship meditation service.

Eddie has always done things a little bit differently. From the time he was a child when he taught himself to play guitar, he has played a right handed acoustic-electric flipped over to lefty. Not knowing there was a wrong way to play it, it just became his way and it gives his chords subtle nuances that contribute much to his unique and original sound.

Popular with live audiences for his great melodies, beautiful voice and his easy warmth and humor, Cunningham began his career playing the San Diego club circuit with Hoke Simpson and was booked by Chuck Perrin to play the circuit of clubs.After playing with Hoke as (FOOL) He started The Amber Band with Barrie Dempsey, Danny Pinnella and Loren Graham and they recorded a single “45″ (Produced by Steve Wetherbee)  and performed on the KPBS-TV concert for a special Sound Stage that won many awards.

Cunningham’s next band, Cowboys & Indians, was signed live on the spot by Keith Cowan, A&R Rep for Atlantic Records. An alternative country rock group with Eddie as lead singer and songwriter, the band included co-writer John Khula, Bruce Clark, Steve Jumal and Mark Spriggs. Their Atlantic Records CD is collection of Native American tribal rock and country rock ballads. The band continued on to record for X/S and Nufire Records.

Eddie continued honing his writing skills playing the Los Angeles songwriters circuit and visiting the famous Palomino Club in North Hollywood where he met many songwriters including Jim Lauderdale, Jeffrey Steele (Boy Howdy), Monty Byrom (Big House), Dale Watson, Rosie Flores, James Inveld, Dwight Yoakam and others. Cunningham was the first to do a popular “Writers In The Round” series where songwriters sat in a circle taking turns playing their original music to audiences at The Palomino.(like they do at the Bluebird in Nashville).

Much in demand as a co-writer, collaborator and studio artist in Los Angeles and Nashville, Eddie has earned the respect of such industry professionals as Legendary Rock Icon, Kim Fowley, Grammy Winner Carl Jackson, Gath Brooks manager Bob Doyle, Motown’s head honcho Berry Gordy, Platium writer Desmond Child, Legend Mickey Newbury and E Street’s Danny Federichi. Michael Douglas (The famous actor) offered him a publishing contract with his record label Third Stone/Warner Chappell. He has co-written with some of the best songwriters in the business including Jeffrey Steele, Wendy Waldman, Desmond Child, A.L. “Doodle” Owens, Mentor Williams, Kostas, Steve Bogard  and many others.

His producing credits include co-producer on his song, “Jesus Is More Than A Name” for The Gram Parsons Notebook and producer on CDs for Kenny Loren, Hillbilly Truckers, Michael Mandella and The Forks Of Cypress.

Cunningham’s list of awards and accolades spans two decades and it, too, shows no sign of stopping. He won the Grand Prize for Best Unsigned Country Artist in America in The Jim Beam Country Band Search at The Wildhorse Saloon in Nashville.(featured on C.M.T.)  He has received awards for “Male Vocalist of the Year,” “Songwriter of the Year,” “Song of the Year,” “Best Country Rock,” “Best Latin Urban,” “Best Gospel,” and others from The Independent Music Awards, (IMA) The California Country Music Awards,(CCMA)  The Southern California Music Awards, (SCMA) The Los Angeles Music Awards,(LAMA)  The Independent Acoustic Music Awards, (IAMA)  The Nashville Songwriters Association International, (NSAI)  The Billboard World Song Contest and The John Lennon Song Contest.

Eddie has shared the stage with many great artists including Garth Brooks, Brooks and Dunn, Montgomery Gentry, Mary Chapin Carpenter, Bryan White, Joe Diffee, Aaron Tippin, Gary Morris, Jesse Colin Young and many others. His songs have been recorded by Rock N’ Roll and R&B Super Star Ben E. King, Jeffrey Steele (Boy Howdy), Monty Byrom (Big House), Country Hall of Fame recording Star Moe Bandy, California Country Rock Legend Chris Darrow, Grammy winner Wendy Waldman, Texas roots country and Western Star Dale Watson, Buddy Jewell, Todd Fritsch, Eddie

Dunbar, Mark Insley, Jenny Slate and Pete Martinez, Deborah Hightower and most recently Petal Steel Rocker HeXx Henderson.

Cunningham’s voice and songs have been heard worldwide and can be found in movies, in national commercials (Mountain Dew, Apple Mac Vista Blues, NBC Affiliate KFDX News Center 3) and on television shows (Touched By An Angel, Starting Over, Gundam Cartoons) that have garnered over 40 Emmy Awards nominations and MTV Awards.

On the big screen Eddie stars and sings in a series of eight indie films created by legendary record producer Kim Fowley. These include Jukebox California, Redneck Nation, Outlaws in America, Trailer Parks After Dark, Satan of Silverlake, Surfing Frankenstein, Pink Cement and Gangster Puppets. These films and the characters Eddie plays have their own niche fans in the U.K. and France and will soon be released to audiences in the U.S.

With many new albums in the planning stages, Eddie Cunningham is an artist who is constantly creating, on fire with new ideas and always ready to try something different. His goal is still to write the best song he has ever written.

NEW RELEASES, NEWS AND WORKS-IN-PROCESS The Forks Of Cypress EP Number 31 a tribute to Mike Pizza and Vin Scully and in honor of the 911 victims. Retrospective, with his original art on the cover.

“Jesus Is More Than A Name” is being re-released on Rhino Records with “High But I Ain’t Holding,” by Dale Watson, co-written with Cunningham, Mike Ward and – from the grave – Gram Parsons. Eddie and Chris Darrow are at work on their second CD, New Darrow Cunningham.

The Independent Music Awards Now Hear This compilation CD, including Eddie’s power gospel hit “Jesus Is More Than A Name,” made its debut on the eMusic site and immediately landed on the site’s “Power Chart” of the Top Ten Downloaded Albums in its vast catalog. Eddie is finishing up his newest record “Eddie Leroy Cunningham Jr.” and will be here by Christmas 2019 Eddie’s new focus is to get his songs everywhere and do what ever it takes to do that!

An innately talented young L.A. boy growing up from Downey to Norwalk to La Puente one day picked up a guitar and was on his way to living the vision. ​

Elvis & the Beatles began to stir in him a natural song writing & guitar playing gift and the boy Eddie started playing the broom only he played it upside down. Not knowing there was a wrong way to play it, this right handed boy played his chords left handed. One by one these came to him along with learning how to sing other people’s songs. The blessing gave him not only the ability to write and to play but a natural voice as melodiously beautiful as Kenny Loggins and as deeply and stirringly soulful as Ray Charles. Eddie Cunningham comes from tough stuff, A Texas truck driving grandpa with Dakota Cunningham Indian blood running through his veins. Eddie’s grandmother drove a Hollywood taxi, hanging out at the Palomino, selling poppies for the American legion, while raising Eddie’s step brother Butchie who died from MD at 17. Daddy worked 3 jobs to support the family, the primary one as a foreman in a steel mill while Mama stayed home to bring the family up right. Up right was work hard, care for each other, love each other and always do not the easy thing but the right thing. Eddie holds a Joseph Campbell philosophy although he never knew that’s what it was but again Eddie is a natural. That philosophy is for some of us, the chosen ones, the destination is the journey.. Be grateful for what you have, not only know who you are but as importantly know who you are not. “I think the main thing is keep your heart on track don’t stray and don’t give into temptations that result into negative Karma….stay true to your path and work hard and play safe.” ~Eddie Cunningham. Good

Lord willin’ and the creeks don’t rise, Eddie is the vision. ~Dolly Miller Brennan

We’d love to hear more about your art. What do you do you do and why and what do you hope others will take away from your work?
It’s very colorful and very dark at times and even graffitti like, “I love writing on walls and billboards all weathered out and spray painted on” I love to express my feelings in art and music, thats mostly what art and music is to me….my therapy…But, not everyone gets my art, then some people love it…I have 5,000 paintings in my warehouse. and Our house is flooded with art.  I mostly work with acrylics but I will create with anything I can get my hands on. I’ve won awards and had many shows and sold many pieces and I even had my own gallery that my girlfriend Lynn Smith opened in honor of her dear brother John Allen, (THE JOHN ALLEN GALLERY) the gallery is now closed and Now all my work is down in my studio warehouse so I can do big canvases without tearing a wall down…. most of my recent works are viewable on my Instagram page and can be purchased by emailing me or message me on the page I also have a Facebook page.

Every painting tells a story depends on my mood or vision of what I want to communicate or express at that time. My works of art are inspired by my art masters, my teachers Marj Hyde (Hyde gallery at Grossmont College) and Harry Lum (Harry said I have a sloppy style that has not been defined yet but, its my own on going journey of pain and life) and Marj gave me the Gold X and took my final painting home with her when she retired.

I was born with the gifts of art and music and In my art I’m considered an abstract expressionist and In my music I’m more of a realists, “If I don’t live it I don’t write it” Now I’ve written for publishing companies and co-written with lots of big names legend writers and we make stuff up for the sake of getting it cut…. but, for the most part when I’m writing for me its about what I’ve been through or my family or my friends. Or something that really interests me.

Have things improved for artists? What should cities do to empower artists?
Yes there are more opportunity today with all the media in music and on the internet. Empowering artist give them a platform make them feel wanted and let them be heard and seen..VOYAGELA is great!

Promote art more as a theraphy for self esteem and healing from pain, loss, death, hurt and just for the pure amusement of decoration and to make your house look bitchen inside.

Do you have any events coming?
Yes Malibu country fair summer abstract on the bay.

Where would we go to see more of your work?
To see my art it can be viewed on my Instagram page. or my Facebook page THE JOHN ALLEN GALLERY.

How can people support you and your art work and music?
Buy it and spread the word, where you got it… write about it… and play it and show it to others.. exposure is key

VoyageLA is awesome for doing this and I’m greatful for this article. thank you Sarah Abrams for reaching out and liking  a video I posted of me and HeXx Henderson (the greatest rock steel player on the planet) doing a snippet of “Author of my Pain” a orininal song I wrote for my good friend Dennis Knutson.

What do you think it takes to be successful as an artist?
Artwork should make you feel…… it should be therapy or a release of pain or a part of the story of your life…… essential for success is hard work and originality! and don’t give up and create everyday!

Contact Info:

Getting in touch: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

1 Comment

  1. john graf

    April 8, 2018 at 15:36

    This is really cool…Insane paintings…love it Brother.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

More in