Bobbo Byrnes and his bandmates are Chasing Rock and Roll all the way from California to Canada in his latest video and single — showcasing today on Tinnitist.
“I remember it being one of my favourite places to tour,” the California singer-songwriter recalls. “I remember falling in love with Canada, and not wanting the tour to end. The El Mocambo and Hotel Brunswick were two places I remembered playing. I remember wandering into Don Cherry’s Sports Grill and watching a hockey game instead of going to soundcheck. I remember hanging with band members from ’63 Monroe, Landslide and Osterberg, and staying at one of their houses where the only food in the fridge was Labatt’s 50s and a couple of ketchup packets. I remember cutting my arm open on my guitar strings, and finishing the set with someone else’s guitar and bleeding all over it.”
Byrnes’ rock ’n’ roll memories — and his unabashed love for the Great White North — come through loud and clear on the single, which follows a van of young American dudes ready to tear up the stage, night after night, in Canada. In his usual rootsy fashion — imagine Jeff Tweedy and Paul Westerberg joining forces — Byrnes observes the nightly pastime of many-a-rocker: winning over patrons and audiences alike, finding inspiration at the sound of a Blue Rodeo album, seeking refuge on the floor of hotel rooms for a few moments of rest, and doing it all again the following night.
Chasing Rock and Roll is in good company on Byrnes’ most recent record SeaGreenNumber5 — and one he attributes to having an unabashed “house party” vibe. Wanting to encapsulate a living room concert — an intimate portrait, sans amplifiers or gimmicks — SeaGreenNumber5 is Byrnes stripped down to his core, providing the listener with a host of songs that will make you feel like the only person in the room.
“In the past few years I’ve done a lot of house concerts,” Byrnes reveals. “There’s something special about performing in a small room with a handful of people connecting that really is a different experience. It’s exactly what I was going for.”