Bobby Bare Jr. supporting The Bottle Rockets Wednesday June 14, 2006 Club Cafe Pittsburgh, PA
Bobby Bare Jr. autographed ticket stub
Bobby Bare Jr.: Your Adorable Beast/Cape/I'll Be Around/The Monk At The Disco/Flat Chested Girl From Maynardville/The Demon Valley/Borrow Your Girl/The Terrible Sunrise/Bionic/Valentine/Uh Wuh Oh/Just Stop Cryin'
The Bottle Rockets: Better Than Broken/Middle Man/I Quit/Happy Anniversary/Blind/Mountain To Climb/Align Yourself/Suffering Servant/Feeling Down/Where I'm From/Zoysia//Sunday Sports/Kit Kat Clock/Every Kind Of Everything/I'll Be Comin' Around/Gravity Fails/Thousand Dollar Car/Radar Gun/Welfare Music/Passenger Side/I Wanna Come Home
Standing outside before the doors opened I had the chance to talk to Brian. He stated a few years ago he would NEVER return to Pittsburgh after a few poorly attended shows. I asked him why the change? His response, "Never say never." Fucking A! He was delighted at the turnout tonight and vowed to return. I also asked him how he liked touring with Bobby Bare Jr.? He shrugged allright as long as he showed up. What? He told me he had been late a few times and tonight's booker is giving him thirty minutes to show up or else he's cut from the bill. FUCK!! Well, no shit, twenty nine minutes later his van rolls up and thankfully he played. And play they did. What a set! With his five piece configuration (including sax) they sounded fantastic. He opened with an understated solo 'Your Adorable Beast' (which I was wishing for last time and he failed to play) that was too sweet. The rest of the set had the band rockin'. Opener? I think not. Who can you follow that? The Bottle Rockets motherfucker!
So The Borox come out and play their new album Zoysia in it's entirety before playing a 'hits' set. The new shit sounded really good to these ears and the band was obviously into playing it. Kinda' infectious vibe. The second set had to be condensed so that locals Pure Elliot could play the late show. Are you fucking kidding me? When will this madness end? As for the second set, either I was getting too blasted (which I was) or the band seemed to be losing steam (which they were) but I liked the first set better? I dunno, it was good all the same and a fun night all around. One things for sure, Henneman can play a guitar!
Bobby Bare Jr. autographed Bare Jr.'s Boo-Tay and Brainwasher CD covers
Brian Henneman autographed The Bottle Rockets' The Brooklyn Side and Brand New Year CD covers
Brian Henneman autographed print
Brian Henneman and Bobby Bare Jr. autographed show flyer
Bottle Rockets album has 'Crazy Horse' feel
Monday, June 12, 2006
Being called the "best" of anything is usually a good thing. So Brian Henneman of the Bottle Rockets can't complain too much that the St. Louis-based group is often called the best bar band in America.
Even though calling the Bottle Rockets a bar band is like calling Kenny G. a hip-hop artist.
"What it tends to do , I think, is probably prevent a lot of people from hearing us who are opposed to that sort of thing," says Henneman, who performs with the Bottle Rockets Wednesday at Club Cafe, South Side.
The bar band image -- crusty veteran rockers who can play anything from Adam Ant to ZZ Top -- couldn't be further from the truth in regards to the Bottle Rockets' output.
Take "Zoysia," the band's new CD. It has touches of country, blues, and rock without exactly being strictly country, blues or rock. Perhaps the best way to describe it is classic American, the music that started with Elvis Presley and Hank Williams, was then filtered through Creedence Clearwater Revival and the Byrds to John Mellencamp and Tom Petty, Wilco and Son Volt.
That's the Bottle Rockets' lineage.
"I guess it comes from being a fan of rock music," says Henneman, noting that as a kid, he never knew the difference between genres. "I wasn't aware there were divisions of music. You'd hear 12 different types of songs, and they were all just rock songs to me."
Nor did he realize that the one musician who would influence him was also all over the airwaves.
Yes, Neil Young did get played in Henneman's native St. Louis, although, he insists, not as much as the Marshall Tucker Band. Henneman admits he didn't even realize who Young was until the late 1970s when he began to immerse himself in the Canadian-born rocker's catalog. A sound was born, and while "Zoysia" does have its own imprint, there's an undeniably "Crazy Horse" feel to songs such as "Better Than Broken" and "Happy Anniversary."
"Believe me, I'm proud to be compared to Neil," Henneman says. "That's one I'll take. I'd rather have that than a lot of other things."
What the Bottle Rockets -- the current lineup is Henneman on vocals and guitar, Mark Ortmann on drums, bassist Keith Voegele, and guitarist John Horton -- do have is a loyal, if somewhat small, following that enjoys the band's diversity. And if that ability to fit into anywhere from a blues festival to a honky-tonk club helps, all the better.
"The more targets you can hit at once," Henneman says, "the better off you are."
Bobby Bare Jr. Monday May 9, 2005 Club Cafe Pittsburgh, PA
w/ Patrick Maloney
Bobby Bare Jr. autographed ticket stub
I'll Be Around/The Monk At The Disco/Flat Chested Girl From Maynardville/The DemonValley/Strange Bird/Mother Fucker/Let's Rock And Roll/Mayonnaise Brain/Visit Me In Music City/Borrow You Girl/Valentine/Dig Down
Encore: The Terrible Sunrise/Just Stop Cryin'*
Monday early show at Club Cafe. Total attendance: 16 fucking people. This was one of THE smallest crowds for a show I have ever seen. Dickhead me goes early to get a good seat. Good seat? The place was ours. It was like he was performing in my living room. The only upside was hearing the band's version of Springsteen's 'Fire' at soundcheck.
Bobby came out and boldly stated, "We are going to play the best set we have ever done." Fuckin'-A right. He and his band actually delivered on that promise. What a kick-ass show. I was relishing every moment knowing it was probably the last time he would bother swinging through town again.
I attempted to give him this portrait I drew but he refused and autographed it instead
Bobby Bare Jr. autographed Young Criminals' Starvation League CD cover
Bobby Bare Jr. autographed From The End Of Your Leash CD cover
Bobby Bare Jr.'s Band and opener Patrick Maloney autographed show flyer (produced by someone else besides me)
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