Reno Bo
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Reno Bo


Band Rock Classic Rock


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This band has not uploaded any videos



"The Big Takeover - December 2009"

If I said I was expecting this, I'd be lying. I'd missed a few hint: ADAM SCHLESINGER of IVY and FOUNTAINS OF WAYNE produces one song, and Nashville's Bo previously bassed for MOONEY SUZUKI and THE STROKES' ALBERT HAMMOND. By chance, I'd just listened to Big Star's box set before "Happenings.." and I momentarily thought I'd accidentally put Big Star back on. That's the lofty milieu that Bo and Co. dole out on his debut, even if he's a couple Tennesse road hours and 37 years removed from his Memphis forbears. "Happenings..." primarily deals in big guitar '70's power-pop, with his Alex Chilton/Posies/Matthew Sweet-like voice and great harmonies, as heard on the boss, big and bold "Higher Tonight" (which has a similar guitar lick as The Chameleons' 'Nostalgia'), and the standout, beautifully piano-cooled "Off Your Back" being two particular gems. What a sleeper! - The Big Takeover

"Things To Know about Reno Bo"

Things To Know About Reno Bo

JW: What made you decide to go solo after so many years as a sideman?

RB: I don’t consider what I’m doing now “going solo” per sé. Going solo is something Sting or Don Henley does. I’m just a guy who has played with a bunch of bands and is now in a band that happens to be named after him. We are a band in the best way a band can be. Everyone wants to be here and puts in the effort. I’ve been lucky in that way. The “hired gun” mentality is prevalent in Nashville. I’ve got a band that feels like a band should feel. I’ve been writing songs all along and am just now getting to the point where I’m ready to present them in a public way. I’ve always been a late bloomer. I don’t think I really knew what I wanted from my music earlier in my life. Now I do. I’m very exited by the freedom that has allowed me in a lot of ways.

JW: Your move from New York to Nashville must have been a bit of culture shock, so tell me, what’s the biggest adjustment for you regarding the move?

RB: Well, I guess I was spoiled by New York a bit. I love New York dearly and it’s my favorite city in the world to come home to. Everything’s there. It’s kind of a microcosm of so many other cultures and traditions yet still maintains it’s own New York-ness. What I miss most is the food. I miss being able to go out at any time of the day and get Moroccan or Indian or Italian or Vietnamese food. I’ve realized I’m a bit of a snob in that department. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good meat-and-three or a bar sandwich. Moving down to Nashville, I’ve been able to empathize a bit with the Southerner’s view of “Yankee” culture. When the World Series was going on, I was the only one cheering on the Yankees. I felt like Michael Moore in the middle of a Republican Convention. We must seem like aliens to people from here.

JW: Why did you sign with Electric Western Records? Did you consider any other labels?

RB: Electric Western is a young company with incredible people and a work ethic I can get behind. It’s small and does everything organically. I also happen to be a co-owner. It was like making a pact with myself. I had to negotiate a bit but the good me won out in the end!

JW: When did you get interested in music? Who are some of your musical influences and what did they do that formed your musical foundation?

RB: I think the first record I heard was “Runaway” by Del Shannon. My dad had a pretty good record collection, and one of his albums was a WCBS-FM (a New York City radio station) compilation. “Runaway” was on side one. I must have been about 4 or 5 years old. The guitar sound killed me. Then when I heard the Farfisa solo in the middle eight, my little baby mind was officially blown. I’ve been a hopeless Rock and Roll nut ever since.

JW: The album cover gives a throwback feel to your music. Who’s idea was it regarding the album cover concept and what purpose does it have with regards to your music?

RB: So far, I’ve done all the artwork for anything related to may band. Posters, album art etc. Since I was a kid, I’ve always loved and made art. In my book, it’s at least 50% of the rock and roll experience. Probably more. The visuals need to support the sounds. For this album, I wanted to evoke the feeling of mid-sixties blue note jazz records and cross it with Robert Brown John’s work and early 70’s classic rock album art. I spend a ridiculous amount of time working up ideas until they are just right. It has to match the music.

JW: Where do you see Rock Music in 5 years?

RB: I think Rock and Roll has a very bright future. As bright as its past. If it’s a good little boy and eats all of its pudding, it will grow up to be big and strong.

JW: You mentioned in an MTSU Sidelines article that performing with both Mooney Suzuki and Albert Hammond Jr. were diametrically different. What will a Reno Bo live performance look and sound like as you launch your solo career?

RB: Somewhere in between the two. We’re not as over-the-top MC5 rock as Mooney is, and our music sounds nothing like Albert’s or The Strokes. But we’re a melodic pop band with classic rock and blues tendencies. I love high energy Rock and Roll, but try to combine it with memorable choruses and pretty melodies. Songwriting-wise, I’m a traditionalist – you’ll get a verse, chorus, verse, bridge, guitar solo and back the chorus again, and it’s all done within three of four minutes. But that’s just enough time to give you everything we got.

JW: What does the phrase “The day the Music Died” mean to you?

RB: To me it’s a holy phrase related to the history of Rock and Roll. Some journalist friends of mine have told me that according to whatever journalistic rules guide the print and internet universe, the phrase “rock and roll” is not supposed to be capitalized. I disagree. Rock and Roll should always be capitalized. When someone emails you in all caps, you know they are yelling at you. Well, every time Rock and Roll is uttered, it should be shouted. The Day the Music Died was a momentous event in rock history when we lost Buddy, Bopper and Richie. Don McLean immortalized it in American Pie. We lost some amazing people that day but we never lost Rock and Roll and the music didn’t die. It never will.

JW: Do you think that we have reached the stratosphere of the imaginary sound in Rock music and now must return to Rock’s musical foundation in order to take music to a new Realm?

RB: OK… Can of worms opened! I can go on for days about this but won’t. You’re kind of hitting the nail on the head with this question. As far as I’m concerned, Rock and Roll is a great American tradition. Like baseball. Like the blues. Rock and Roll reached the stratosphere of its “imaginary sound” as far back as 1956 when Little Richard, Elvis and Chuck Berry were doing their thing. Everything after has been some re-worked version of that. Rock and Roll is simply human energy in musical form. With it, humans hit upon the ultimate folk art form and that is why it will never die. People have been saying Rock and Roll is dead since the 60’s. It hasn’t gone anywhere and isn’t going anywhere. Remember when Electronica was supposed to be the next big thing? Come on. Computers don’t make music. People do. After the next ice age comes and wipes everything out – mp3’s, CDs, computers – some 12 year old kid will find a guitar frozen in the ice, defrost it and play a chord. That will be the beginning of the next wave of Rock and Roll 2000 years from now.

JW: One of the goals of an artist is to make enough money so that they can continue practicing their craft. What is the goal of Reno Bo other then earning a living playing music?

RB: Putting something good in the world. That’s first and foremost. What’s amazing to me about music, or any art form really, is that you can create something that didn’t exist before and put it into the world. And it lasts forever. It really does. In some sort of way. Someone might be listening to it somewhere. Or find it in twenty years. Or sixty. Or seven hundred. Who knows? You can’t really think about that sort of thing. My mama likes it and that’s good enough for me. - CWG Magazine


"Happenings And Other Things" - February 2009 (Electric Western Records, LP, EWR001)

"There's A Light b/w Baby, You're Not Feelin' Me Tonight" - March 2009 (Electric Western Records, Single, EWR004)



"Happenings And Other Things"

“There’s a light that keeps on shining on and on.” So goes the lyric of “There’s A Light,” the first song on Reno Bo’s debut album HAPPENINGS AND OTHER THINGS. And a bright light it is. Only one song in and the tune’s soaring blue-eyed soul chorus is already lodged into that three-minute-pop-song-loving part of your brain. Not a bad start. By the time the record’s forty-one minute playing time goes by in a sea of Petty-esque hooks, guitar solos, rockers, ballads, pianos, organs and harmonies, it is evident that Reno Bo has swung for the fences and hit a genuine rock and roll home run. There’s power in this pop. It rolls as it rocks. HAPPENINGS AND OTHER THINGS makes it official: an exciting new artist has arrived and the name is Reno Bo.

Great. But what exactly is a ‘Reno Bo’? Is it a man? Is it a band? The answer is both. Reno Bo is the man who wrote this album. Reno Bo is the band who recorded it. Confused? Don’t be. It’s fairly simple. Reno Bo is a songwriter and musician who spent the better part of the last three years on the road, as a touring bass player for Strokes guitarist Albert Hammond Jr. and NYC garage rockers The Mooney Suzuki. Between tours and on breaks, Bo starting piecing together the recordings that would make up the songs for his first solo album. He and drummer Will Scott laid down the
foundation then Bo overdubbed guitars, basses and vocals. His knack for pop hooks attracted the talents of Fountains Of Wayne main man Adam Schlesinger who appears as producer on the track “Shake Me Up.” He then enlisted a short list of friends to come in to play various other instruments and parts. By the time his touring commitments with Hammond were finished in the fall of 2008, Bo decided to make the move from his native New York to Nashville, TN where he currently resides. There he assembled his band (known lovingly as “Reno Bo”), put the finishing touches on the album and dedicated the second half of 2009 to its release and promotion.

“The time was right to make an album,” Bo explains. “I had been touring as a member of other people’s bands for years but had these songs brewing. I wanted the album to flow and to be an experience as a cohesive collection of songs like the classic rock and roll records I love. I wanted to be a part of that tradition.” Bo injects the album with that unknown magical substance some of the best classic albums contain. “I See Stars” combines the melodious joy of a Teenage Fanclub tune with Zuma era Neil Young. Byrds/Beach Boys harmonies soar over jangling guitars in “Here Right Now.” On the acoustic ballad “Baby, You’re Not Feelin’ Me Tonight,” Bo ruminates on the roads not taken in the midst of a doomed relationship when he delivers the line “We can’t get at what we used to have it’s a treasure wrapped in chains / A sleigh of tigers drove my heart and I gave you the reins.” HAPPENINGS AND OTHER THINGS is a record to grow with. It’s one of those
albums that is instantly enjoyable yet reveals more of itself to the listener upon repeated plays.

“I don’t know what it is that compels an artist to share his work,” says Bo. “Any painter or
musician could easily do their work in the comfort of his bedroom without anyone’s knowledge. Maybe it’s a compulsive disorder of some kind that we collectively share. To me, rock and roll is the people’s music and it belongs to them. No need to keep it hid. I plan to keep on making as many records as I can.” If HAPPENINGS AND OTHER THINGS is any indication of what is to come, the future is bright for Reno Bo. There’s a light indeed.