Sue Young shares bilingual stories and songs with kids and families in schools and libraries around Texas and the US. Her Folk/Americana duo Young And Rusty plays clubs and concert venues throughout the Lone Star state and beyond.
Sue grew up in a big, music-loving family. Her mother played the piano, her father played baritone ukelele and tenor guitar, all five children played an instrument, and everyone sang. Sue started on ukulele at age 8, moved to guitar at 11, and has been singing and playing ever since. Music heard in her home while growing up included the Beatles, Bob Dylan, the Rolling Stones, Joan Baez, Joni Mitchell, Bonnie Raitt, Stevie Wonder, Jimi Hendrix, Stan Getz, Bach, and Rogers and Hammerstein.
The Youngs moved around, but mainly lived out west- in Seattle, Washington, Salt Lake City, Utah and in Albuquerque, New Mexico. In 1977-78, Sue spent a year in Quito, Ecuador studying at University of New Mexico's Centro Andino. It was a magical time full of adventure and learning. She traveled around South America and fell passionately in love with Latin American music and culture. She began performing in clubs around this time and continued after returning to the States. She worked as a solo and in a duo in Albuquerque and Santa Fe. She also sang with a trio that did folk music of North and South America, and with Govinda, a jazz-rock fusion band, where her vocal style was once compared to "Appalachian scat".
Sue moved to Austin, Texas in 1985 to be part of the live music scene. She wound up teaching music and Spanish to children and that led to a new career as a children’s songwriter and storyteller. Sue has delighted thousands of kids and families at schools, libraries and festivals around the US, and her 2007 CD Release “The Legend Of The Quetzal – Tales and Tunes Of Latin America” received a Parents’ Choice Silver Honor Award and a Creative Child Seal Of Excellence. She wrote the 2009 and 2011 Texas Summer Reading Club theme songs. Sue puts together a show coordinated with the Collaborative Summer Reading Theme every year – and writes an original song to go with the theme.
She translated Lucas Miller’s song and book “Going Down To Mexico – Rumbo A México” – about the migration of the Monarch Butterfly – into Spanish.
The Austin years have seen Sue grow and mature as an artist and a writer. A four time Kerrville New Folk Finalist, she's opened shows for such luminaries as Lyle Lovett, Jimmie Dale Gilmore, Jesse Winchester, Townes Van Zandt and Kenny Rankin. The Austin Chronicle described her first CD "From the Mother" as "lush and loving…executed with care and genius… an angelic voice". Her 2003 CD release "River of Life" was called “a beautiful, soul making album”.
Sue's 2012 release "Gliding" brought her full circle back to her folk and singer songwriter roots. The album was nominated for 2013 Texas Music Award for Female Vocalist of the Year and it includes "Black Water" - a song about the 2010 BP Gulf oil spill. "Black Water" was a winner in the 2012 Discoveries Playlist Competition.
She performs with songwriter Rusty Nelson as Young And Rusty. The duo released “Back Road Love” in 2014. Their 2017 release “Comeback Coming On” in 2017 debuted at #21 on the Folk DJ charts.