Ruston picked up and left Belgium at 17, relocating to Nashville to live with his older sister. He went on to form the popular jam band Elmwood and tour from 2008 until 2011. By 2013, he had signed his first publishing deal with BMG in Nashville and was landing high-profile placements.
However, his life really spun out of control.
"Before I was offered the deal, I relapsed into an old drug habit that I had been struggling with for a few years,” he sighs. "I ended up going to rehab. I couldn’t quite get my personal rhythm right. Then, I overdosed in January 2016. That was the last wakeup call I needed.”
Finally getting clean, Ruston released Halloween that June. Produced by Mike Mogis [Bright Eyes, First Aid Kit, Jenny Lewis] and tracked in just nine days, it formally introduced listeners to his voice. "Poison” racked up over 516K Spotify streams, while "Black Magic” soundtracked the Season Finale of the CBS series Scorpion. With its lilting steel guitar, rough delivery, and enchanting refrain, the track showcases his honesty with the cry, "Love is hell.”
"I think everybody’s been there,” he continues. "You go through one too many bad relationships and get that feeling like, ‘Love shouldn’t be this fucking hard and difficult.’ It’s as if someone cast a spell on you. They’re all really just stepping stones for you to be able to see what you really need as far as love is concerned.”