Memphis, Tennessee native who now resides in Austin, Texas, Rob Baird recalls growing up being surrounded by music. Memphis, although not as famous for music as Nashville, has shaped the landscape of the blues, rock n roll, and Motown genre. Baird in a recent phone conversation chats about his new record and his switch from a cattle rancher to a singer-songwriter . Growing up he tells us his very first concert was ZZ Top when he was in the third grade but that he was inspired by Al Green and the music that made Memphis famous. “If you grew up in Memphis, you just drive by Sun Records 3000 times in your lifetime,” he tells us. “I feel like Memphis doesn’t get as much credit as it deserves for being such a great music town”.
He started playing music in college and when people started showing up to his shows, he knew that maybe the switch from ranch manager to musician was the best decision to make. After releasing his first two records in Nashville, he made the move to Austin. “I’m obsessed with where I live, I just love it,” Baird tells us of the city. Although all of the writing for his fourth studio record took place at his kitchen table in Texas, he traveled to Nashville to record After All with longtime friend Rick Brantley as the producer under the direction of Jeremy Ferguson (Cage the Elephant and Lucie Silvas).
He called the shots on this record, writing all ten tracks and allowing only people who he felt knew him and his mission, to work with him to achieve it. “For this project, we just needed someone that we really trusted, that knew me well, and cared about the project, we wanted dear friends who understood what we want to do,” Baird explains. The tracks are autobiographical, telling the story of heartbreak, loss, and healing. Featuring Lucie Silvas’ smokey voice on background vocals on “Burning Blue”, it is one of the highlights on After All.
Looking ahead to 2019, Baird is promoting the new record playing shows not only in Texas but across the south. Check out our review from his intimate showcase in Fort Worth, Texas here.
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