The Robert Socia Band
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The Robert Socia Band

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Music

The best kept secret in music

Press


"A new group and a new sound from an old hand."

The Robert Socia Orchestra

A new group and a new sound from an old hand. Robert Socia played some fine electric guitar lead with Southern Fried. His instrumental breaks were always great in the time honored tradition of southern rock.

So, when the Robert Socia Orchestra was booked at the Saxon Pub, my bride and I took a trip down to Baja Austin to check them out.The band was just getting set up when we arrived. In came a huge 1950's vintage bass drum. There were all the usual guitar cases, and paraphenalia. Then in came a cello. That's right. A cello! Well, we could tell it was going to be an interesting evening.

Robert doesn't romp around the stage anymore like he did with Southern Fried. He has laid down his Stratocaster and renewed his friendship with his acoustic guitar. Now he sits on a stool in front of a mike. He still throws in a few licks, but his style is more akin to the country/folk that underlies so much of great Texas Music.

The first song began with an intro of six or seven notes picked on single strings. It sounded like a pretty standard opening to a pretty standard country/folk song. Robert sang a couple of bars along with easy strumming, and that's when the music started to show some character. A seque into a strong steady strumming reminiscent of Tom Rush. Then suddenly, that big bass drum and the bass guitar shot the rhythm across the room while the fiddle whispered a faint sound of a melody. Next the deep drone of the cello found its own place among the spectrum of harmonious sounds to lend a sweet flavor to the recipe.
The songs of the Robert Socia Orchestra, as good songs should, tell stories. Stories of love, stories of life's struggles, stories of sadness and happiness, and of how great it is to be in Texas. With strings, percussion, and poetry, the Robert Socia Orchestra paints portraits of real people and real places.

The orchestra also got the club hopping more than once when the fiddle and the mandolin were allowed to let loose with some fine musical gymnastics along with Robert's own version of flat picking.

It was a fine evening of music and a fine time of seeing old friends and making new ones.

Don't miss a chance to go and hear the Robert Socia Orchestra.
- Texas Music Beat by Ray Wood


"Socia is devoted to kids' bands, his own"

Socia is devoted to kids' bands, his own
By Cassandra Hinojosa Caller-Times
March 9, 2006

Aside from fronting his roots rock band, Robert Socia shares the gift of music by teaching at Austin's own "School of Rock," The Natural Ear Music School.

"I've got six full bands of little kids and I teach bass, drums, guitar, piano and vocals," said Socia, 25, who leads musicians ages 8 to 16. "They are awesome . . . You can . . . be a kid yourself . . . They are there to have fun. It's more like a camp."

The singer-songwriter and vocalist plays an array of instruments including guitar, mandolin, banjo, percussion, Dobro and vibraphone.

The Robert Socia Band opens for The McKay Brothers on Thursday at Dr. Rockit's Blues Bar, Socia's favorite Corpus Christi hangout.

"I started off playing blues music and it's got that old blues bar (feel) to it. It just feels home to me . . . I am always treated so well when I go up there," said Socia, who has lived in Austin since age 4 and who has played in bands such as Southern Fried, and with Ryan Bingham and Britton Curry.

Socia's band formed in November and released its self-titled debut album last month. A few months ago, the band began playing live shows, including several in Corpus Christi. Prior to those shows, Socia admits he hadn't visited the city since his childhood.

"(I remember) going down to the beach and getting some tar on my feet," he said. "We used to come down there and go fishing. We'd take a family trip every year and rent a beach house and have the extended family come down."

Socia began getting gigs as a high school freshman, around the time Nirvana was ruling radio.

Later, Socia changed his interest to singer-songwriters and started penning tunes, much of which are dark and based on his life experience, history and people he's known.

"It's really a good way for me to get things off my chest," he said. " I'm not trying to write a song to make it sound cool. I write these songs for myself. If I go out to a bar and people like them, that's awesome."

Socia has opened for Micky and the Motorcars, Two Tons of Steel and The South Austin Jug Band.

The former tile layer says he'd probably return to the skill or get a job in the country if he wasn't in music. (His parents own a cattle-raising ranch outside of Austin).

"I love working with cattle," he said. "I seriously enjoy going out and building fence lines and bailing hay. I love stuff like that. I like to get out and work and get my hands dirty."

- By Cassandra Hinojosa Corpus Caller-Times


"John Aielli, KUT Eklektikos"

“Sort of a young Lyle Lovett.” – - KUT 90.5


"Quote"

“These are melodic story songs with a solid beat. Updated country rock. Texas roots rock at its best.” - Bobby Earl Smith


"Quote"

“Always like something that reminds me of Steve Earle.”
– Dale Dudley, KLBJ The Dudley and Bob Show
- – Dale Dudley, KLBJ The Dudley and Bob Show


"Record review Robert Socia Band"

Texas Platters
Record review
BY JIM CALIGIURI





Robert Socia Band
The photographs of Robert Socia have apparently been doctored. Surely that fresh-faced, whisker-free youngster can't be the guy who sings with a world-weary rasp and writes the same sort of shadowy tunes on this self-titled debut. If it is, Socia is mature beyond his years. That's not to say he's beyond beginners' gaffes along the way. Lyrically, tunes like "The Armadillo Song" and "Blind" are overly simplistic, Socia striving for poignancy but attaining banality. Still, there are occasions when he reaches heart-tugging moments that recall Kevin Welch ("Shine") and Alejandro Escovedo ("The Great Divide"), especially when his band includes the lush fiddle of Andy Tindall and cello of Andrew Davis. He explores bluegrass territory, à la the South Austin Jug Band, on the sprightly chugging "Gone 'Fore Dawn," and leans toward contemporary country with the hooky melody of "Little Late." As debuts go, Robert Socia and band have served one up that's just ear-catching enough to make us want to see it live with our own eyes.



- Austin Chronicle


Discography

The Robert Socia Band self-titled release Feb. 21st 2006

currently working on follow up CD, due in 2006

Photos

Feeling a bit camera shy

Bio

The music of The Robert Socia Band is a dark & introspective view inside Americana music in Texas, with a unique blend of musical artists, instrumentation, and arrangements....all backing the storytelling & songwriting of a 25 year old native of Austin Texas.

Socia has spent the past 10 years honing his guitar and songwriting talents by playing and writing with various Austin bands. His own roots rock sound has been influenced by the likes of Lyle Lovett, The Band, Uncle Tupelo, Steve Earl and Little Feat.

His touring band features a unique blend of musical artists, with Socia handling lead vocals and rhythm, slide and lead guitars. Brian Beken picks the mandolin, fiddle, guitar, and cello, Eric Smith adds bass, and Jimmy Anderson plays the drums. The dynamic of the band comes through their instrumental harmonies and solos.

The band’s beat is palpable, with tunes ranging from rockers to ballads to the occasional instrumental. Socia’s lyrics detail life’s dreams, lessons and relationships. “All the songs I write are about real life events and people, my story is on this record.” says Socia. Songs such as “The Armadillo Song” and “Black Gold” showcase his Lone Star roots.

Songwriting is his strength. “Songwriting is such an important part of music and a way for me to really express myself,” Socia says. “If I can tell a good story that someone relates to, then I feel I have done my job."