We are giving away a pair of tickets to Bob Schneider’s B-Day Bash on October 6. To win, comment on this post why you’d like to attend. Winner will be drawn and emailed Friday, October 4.
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From our sponsors:
Bob Schneider’s B-Day Bash
October 6, 2013
Doors 7 p.m., Show 8 p.m. | $20 ADV / $25 Doors | Under 21 OK w/ parent or guardian
3017 SE Milwaukie Ave Portland, OR 97202
Bob Schneider is not new to this game. He has built his career as a working class musician and as a result has an institution of faithful followers all across the country with a mega-fan-base epicenter in Austin.
There have been highs – the near-breakthrough success of ‘Lonelyland,’ and the “next big thing” hype that surrounded it. And lows – he was subsequently dropped by two labels. Through it all he sustained and even flourished as an independent artist releasing five albums, hundreds of digital singles, and fronting three bands simultaneously.
Yet, Schneider still continues to push himself in a multitude of creative directions now with the beguiling melodies of ‘Lovely Creatures’ Undoubtedly, with ‘Lovely Creatures,’ Bob Schneider delivers the album that his fans have long wanted. Yearning choruses, sharp lyrics that are at times funny and alternately tragic, memorable melodies, and clever surprises all converge on ‘Lovely Creatures’ in an ear-friendly fashion that promises heavy rotation for devout fans and newly converted Schneider-philes.
“I ended up going into the studio with Dwight Baker, the producer,” says Bob, “with the idea that we wanted to make a polished and beautiful sounding record, which I believe is what we ended up with. Because the songs are all love songs, for the most part, I ended up calling the record ‘Lovely Creatures,’ referring both to the collection of songs and to people in general.” On ‘Lovely Creatures,’ Bob focuses (at least thematically) on songs about love (both found and lost) while keeping the musical styles quintessentially diverse.
‘If you want something done right, do it yourself.’
That line of advice tends to get stated with a lot more frequency than it’s actually followed. In Gabriel Kelley’s case, though, it’s something he’s never needed to think about: It’s the way he’s always done things.
The talented 27-year-old raised most of the funds for his debut album with a Kickstarter campaign, but his manner of conducting his life and music runs deeper. The saga of how IT DON’T COME EASY came to be is one of steadfast determination and self-sufficiency and a commitment to doing the right thing—often against challenging odds. And, as Kelley himself notes, there’s a corollary: Even when the creative process isn’t a walk in the park, it’s worth the effort when the work is honest.
And it is. IT DON’T COME EASY is an uncompromising and heartfelt debut that, if it requires a category, would fit comfortably under “singer-songwriter.” In the best sense of that tradition, it doesn’t trifle with extraneous anythings: no wasted lines or unnecessary instrumental flourishes, just a communal effort from Kelley and his fellow musicians to, as he puts it, “serve the songs.”
The album was a long time coming—Kelley reckons “I waited six years to make my first album”—largely because its ten songs express a pretty expansive range of life experience. That includes a rural, working-class boyhood in Georgia, a total immersion living-abroad adolescence and an early adulthood spent—and subsequently walked away from—as a professional songwriter on Nashville’s Music Row.
“The first music I remember,” says the affable Kelley, “is what my folks played at home: Neil Young, John Prine, Cat Stevens, even early Santana and Leon Russell. I soaked all that up. And my folks were members of a community about 20 miles north of Athens, where people played old-time, pre-bluegrass music. I learned to play guitar at these pickings, in a big circle around a fire.” (The man who taught Kelley to play, Pat Shields, wrote the powerful lament “These Old Green Hills” on IT DON’T COME EASY.)