Bob Evans

Bob Evans

 Fitzroy, Victoria, AUS
BandRockSinger/Songwriter

Bob Evans has truly captivated Australia with his charismatic albums, further proving his natural gift for creative songwriting.

Biography

Strange things happen in Nashville, Tennessee. People forget who they are. Dreams come true. Fingers get covered in blisters. All of these things happened to Kevin Mitchell, erstwhile front man of much-loved, Perth indie band Jebediah, now an ARIA award-winning, singer-songwriter performing under the name Bob Evans, during the making of his third album, Goodnight, Bull Creek!
Strange things began to happen the minute he arrived.
Mitchell received an email from his Nashville-based producer Brad Jones (who also produced the last Bob Evans album Suburban Songbook) saying he was ready for pre-production but first he had to run off and play at a Clash tribute gig, just Jones and a bunch of gun Nashville musicians playing the entire London Calling album.
“He asked me if I wanted to come along. Before I knew it I was up on stage singing ‘Clampdown’. Then I got back up for an encore - ‘Rock The Casbah’. Confused and jetlagged, that was my first ever gig in Nashville.”
To make things even more confounding, Mitchell was billed as Bob Evans from Jebediah. Everyone took his stage moniker to be his real name. “It was just too confusing trying to explain. I was just Bob for the night, singing Clash songs, and it was really good fun.”
Bob Evans is the name Mitchell uses to record and perform his critically acclaimed albums, Suburban Kid, Suburban Songbook and his upcoming album Goodnight, Bull Creek! This time, however, he is leaving the landscape of his suburban childhood behind.
“My last record was very much an open love letter to my partner,” he says. “I knew I could only make that kind of record once in a lifetime and I’m so proud of it. But this time, I wanted to express my feelings about the outside world a little bit more. This record is a little bit deeper and richer.”

Bull Creek is the name of the southern suburb of Perth where Mitchell grew up. It’s a very ordinary little suburb filled with little brown brick houses. Mitchell says the suburb represents a lot of things he was using on the last album in terms of innocence and naivety and simplicity - all the things he associates with his childhood. The first song, ‘Someone So Much’, states Mitchell’s intention to leave the suburbs behind even though he was expected to do one more suburban record. “It’s my intention to venture out into the world and express something greater than my own little existence,” he explains.
Teaming up again with Songbook producer Brad Jones (Josh Rouse, Yo La Tengo, Sheryl Crow) and recording in the same Nashville studio, Mitchell set out to make a rock album but hold onto the charm of the established Bob Evans sound. Jones encouraged him to throw out the click track and record all the songs live with a group of crack Nashville musicians including drummer Ken Coomer (ex-Wilco), who also played on Suburban Songbook, in-demand guitarist Will Kimbrough (voted Americana Music Association Instrumentalist Of The Year in 2004), Jones on bass, and vocalist Melissa Mathers.
Mitchell says he’s proud of the albums he’s made but didn’t want to be labelled just another singer/songwriter. Instead, he wanted to surprise people by making more of a band record this time. “There is a lot more electricity running through this record. We got four people in room and they played live in the way a good rock album is supposed to be made but seldom is these days. It’s a band album yet there is no band.”
Fans of the singer-songwriter greats - Elvis Costello, Elliott Smith, Neil Finn, Tim Rogers, even Neil Diamond, will find much to admire in Goodnight, Bull Creek! The album’s sound is reassuringly familiar yet bolstered with sophisticated arrangements and instrumentation including organ, flutes, strings, a toy piano and Moog.
One track, “Power Of Speech” is a smooth and sexy Bossa nova tune.
“When I first heard Bossa nova, I fell in love with it instantly and I knew I wanted to write a song like that. It’s completely tongue-in-cheek but the music is serious. I don’t have any classical guitar training so I got blisters on my fingers trying to learn all those jazz chords,” Mitchell says.
Another song, “Pasha Bulker”, is inspired by the grounding of the massive bulk carrier on Nobbys beach in Newcastle but is fuelled by Mitchell’s feelings of being lost at sea during a bout of depression in 2007.
“Brother O Brother” began as Mitchell’s thoughts on Sorry Day and grew into a song about inequality in the world.
“It’s A Beginning” is an upbeat pop song that nods to The Cure, and “Everything Goes”, the beautiful final track on the album, is an ode to life moving on.
Lyrically this album is heavier and deeper than the last record. It’s more twitchy and uncomfortable and maybe a little more restless, which sums up the way Mitchell was feeling leading up to making it. But it maintains the gentle beauty and harmonies of the Bob Evans sound loved by fans on Suburban Songbook.
The next few months will be about releasing and touring Goodnight, Bull Cr

Lyrics

Don't You Think It's Time?

Written By: Kevin Mitchell

Don’t you think it’s time?
Time to start anew
Time for changing views
Time for making up your mind

Don’t you think it’s time?
Time for moving on
Time for growing strong
Time to leave the past behind

You’ve been on my mind
Aw you’ve been on my mind
You’ve been on my mind
Aw you’ve been on my mind

Don’t you think it’s time?
Time for quelling fear
Time for a new year
Time for meaning what you say

Don’t you think it’s time?
Time for easing doubt
Time for reaching out
Time to open up your eyes

You’ve been on my mind
Aw you’ve been on my mind
You’ve been on my mind
Aw you’ve been on my mind

Don’t you think it’s time?
Time for trusting more
Without keeping score
Time to let forgiveness out

Don’t you think it’s time?
Time for showing grace
Time for having faith
Time to make more of this time

You’ve been on my mind
Aw you’ve been on my mind
You’ve been on my mind
Aw you’ve been on my mind

Nowhere Without You

Written By: Kevin Mitchell

I make a miserable DJ
Gettin’ drunk playing records up late
Wearing out a hole in my heart
On the couch from when you went away

Today, wrote out a prescription
Leave all calls to the answering machine
I don’t remember anything
But I know that you know where I’ve been

Where would I go?
What would I do?
I would be nowhere without you

Now I know
Heaven’s above you
I can grow
I just can’t make it on my own

Watchin’ terrible TV
It’s ok all our secrets we keep
I used to dream of broken teeth
Now I lie awake watching you sleep

You fought so independent while
When you leave I’m out diggin’ up holes
To hide and wait til you come back
Like a bad actor between roles

Where would I go?
What would I do?
I would be nowhere without you

Now I know
Heaven’s above you
I can grow
I just can’t make it on my own

Good morning baby, it’s raining outside
We’ve got all day and the sun’s in your eyes
Frisky on whiskey with champagne and wine
Drinking and sinking in love

Where we’ll go
I gloriously don’t know

Nowhere without you
Now I know
Heaven’s above you
I can grow
Nowhere without you
Yeah I know
Heaven’s above you
I can grow
I’m nowhere without you
Yeah I know
Heaven’s above you
Now I can grow
I’m nowhere without you
Yeah I know
Heaven’s above you
Now I can grow
I just can’t make it on my own

Sadness & Whiskey

Written By: Kevin Mitchell

I don’t wanna be a lone guy anymore
Now I found a love my life’s worth livin’ for
Never going back to god knows where I been
That’s a dyin’ scene

I don’t want to be that sentimental guy
Always dreamin’ of the years that passed him by
All the time forgettin’ what he holds on to
And for me it’s you

That’s why I’m hanging up my boots
This time you know it’s true

Do you remember bout the time when we first met
How were we to ever know what to expect
Looking back at all the crazy crazy times
Wishing you were mine

Now I’m sitting on the front step of our house
Just a waiting you to drive your car around
If I didn’t stink of sadness and whiskey
Could you marry me?

Cuz this is where I always be
Come home and you will see

Oooo
All my love
Ooo
All my love
Ooo
All my love

Now I’m sitting on the front step of our house
Just a waiting you to turn your car around
If I didn’t stink of sadness and whiskey
Could you marry me?

Cuz you are where I’ll always be
Come home and you’ll see

Pasha Bulker

Written By: Kevin Mitchell

I took my worries to the waters edge
To drown them peacefully
Saw my reflection
O’er the horizon
A stranded ship like me

Where did I go wrong?
Oh where did I go wrong?

To be like the sun
Sinking in to the sea

The waves spat vitriol against the cliffs
As if to beckon me
If I keep walking it’s all over
I stare out to the sea

Where did I go wrong?
Oh where did I go wrong?

To be like the sun
Sinking in to the sea
Oh to be like the sun
Sinking in to the sea

Where did I go wrong?
Oh where did I go wrong?

Someone So Much

Written By: Kevin Mitchell

Goodnight Bull Creek
You were the world to me
Now you’re just a well worn post code
Full of memories
I drove down your road
Searching for, I don’t know
I was hoping I might find
Something I left long behind

I stayed up all night thinking of
Ways to tell you
That my whole life I’ve been here
Waiting for you
Now my heart is blind
And I’m losing my mind
When you love someone so much
It hurts

Stuck in two minds
Under a starless sky
With the pitter patter footsteps
Of the passer’s by
While I chose the road
The road less travelled by
And sometimes it’s dark and lonely
Living with all your if only’s
But the hardest part of it all
Aint the pictures hung in the hall
But the silence greeting the night
Turning out my broken light

I stayed up all night thinking of
Ways to tell you
That my whole life I’ve been here
Waiting for you
Now my heart is blind
And I’m losing my mind
When you love someone so much
It hurts

Hand Me Downs

Written By: Kevin Mitchell

I got nothing’ darlin
All I’ve got are broken wings
A little love means everything
We’ve got nothing’ baby
If we don’t take it for ourselves
And I need you more than ever now
And still somehow

We get around in hand me downs
We get around in hand me downs

Cos nothing in the world comes easy for us
Even when it looks that way
And I’m still getting’ round in the same stuff
I wore around in ‘98
So when you gonna get a real job son
And buy a little real estate?
If that means living someone elses life
I guess we’re gonna have to wait
Another day

We get around in hand me downs
We get around in hand me downs

Cos nothing in the world comes easy for us
Even when it looks that way
And I’m still getting’ round in the same stuff
I wore around in ‘98
So when you gonna get a real job son
And buy a little real estate?
If that means living someone elses life
I guess we’re gonna have to wait
Another day

We get around in hand me downs
We get around in hand me downs

I got nothing’ darlin’
All I’ve got are broken wings
And I need you more than ever now

Discography

Goodnight, Bull Creek! Mornin, Richmond! (2 LP)
Goodnight, Bull Creek! (LP)
Suburban Songbook (LP)
Don't Walk Alone (single)
Don't You Think It's Time (single)
Nowhere Without You (EP)
Friend (single)
Suburban Kid (LP)
Friday Come Five (single)
Turn (single)