Lonesome Bob deserves more
Kendall Cafe, Cambridge, Mass., June 1, 2002
By Jeffrey B. Remz
CAMBRIDGE, MA - The crowd may have been exceedingly tiny, but that didn't mean that Lonesome Bob was deserving of a such a small attendance on a Saturday night. Nor did it mean that the imposing singer called in his performance either.
In fact, Lonesome Bob, a Nashville-based musician with two strong albums under his belt, was powerful throughout.
Bob certainly cuts a a figure of a man to be reckeoned with physically. He's a hurly burly man of about 6-4 with a goatee and big big arms.
And one strong voice as well. His deep, resonant voice stood front and center throughout, whether the song was light or heavy. Usually, voices tend to get lost in the mix, but not here, making the performance all the better.
Lonesome Bob, aka, Bob Chaney, altered between some more rock-oriented songs (the lead-off "Get Away With It") to straight out country songs (a traditional themed country song, "I Get Smarter Every Day") and was comfortably adept at whatever.
Interestingly, he started by playing the first four songs in order from his most recent disc is "Things Change" from earlier this year on Leap, but he didn't go by the numbers there either by switching to songs from his debut, "Things Fall Apart."
Bob maintains a sense of humor with such songs as "My Mother's Husband," which he said his mother promises him to say isn't really about her.
Helping Bob out big time was guitarist Tom Mason, who ohad an intense look about him and could play a few licks to boot.
Lonesome Bob, who has recorded with Allison Moorer, certainly deserved a whole lot better than the crowd he drew, but fortunately he proved that he was worthy of more.
The Shiners, a septet from Richmond, Va. on the Planetary Records label, opened with a good, lively 40-minute set. They mix their country songs with bluegrass and alt.-country sounds for an interesting combination and play with a lot of heart and intensity.
Main lead singer Wes Freed can carry a tune and the backing band, especially fiddler Erin Snyder, who also played bass for Lonesome Bob, was particularly invigorating.