Interview with Bob Crawford from The Avett Brothers

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Bob Crawford, The Avett Brothers
Bob Crawford from The Avett Brothers

Interview by Scott Preston

The songs are honest: just chords with real voices singing real melodies. But, the heart and the energy with which they are sung, is really why people are talking, and why so many sing along.

They are a reality in a world of entertainment built with smoke and mirrors, and when they play, the common man can break the mirrors and blow the smoke away, so that all that’s left behind is the unwavering beauty of the songs. That’s the commotion, that’s the celebration, and wherever The Avett Brothers are tonight, that’s what you’ll find. (from theavettbrothers.com)

The Avett Brothers will be playing this Friday, May 16, 2008 at The Southgate House in Newport, KY to a sold out crowd. 7:30 doors, 8:30 show | 18+

Cincy Groove: Is the new record finished?

Bob Crawford: We have an EP coming out in July called The Gleem II that is all ready to go. As far as an Avett Brothers full length album, we are looking at what we want to record and where we want to record the album. We have a lot of material to go through, so we hope to record more than we will need later this year. We want to take more time with this record. Its always been gorilla album making with us. Each time we have gone and made a record, its has been more mature and more care is taken. We have been doing a lot of pre production and crafting the songs which is really unlike us. We have been on the road so much recently that every sound check we will go ahead and practice some of the songs.

Cincy Groove: How many shows did The Avett Brothers perform last year?

Bob Crawford: We have played 200 shows a year the last 3 years. We are really on the road so much that we really don’t practice when we are not on the road. I live 4 hours away from Scott and Seth. I’ll come there and practice when I need to. Even Scott and Seth being brothers, I don’t think they see each other very much and they live right down the street from each other. We all have wives and we really work hard to cultivate that part of our lives.

Cincy Groove: I understand that you guys have chartered your first tour bus?

Bob Crawford: We have, we are on our second month with the tour bus. I can definitely say it is the way to go. We have driven just about every kind of vehicle. Scott, Seth, and myself started out in a Dooly. Then we moved up to a conversion van. Then we went to a 15 passenger van. Then it was 15 passenger van with trailer. Then it was a RV. Then right before the bus, we got a mini van, and its been Scott, Seth, and myself in the mini van and then Dane our road manager, Justin our sound guy and Joe Kwon our cello player who all travel in the 15 passenger van.

Cincy Groove: What is one of the strangest places you guys have had to play?

Bob Crawford: Years ago we played at a Blue Rhino (propane company) corporate conference in Charlotte, NC. It was a really odd experience. But at the time, they paid us $300 and we were very happy with that. We have also played numerous college campus cafeteria’s where your playing over people talking about what happened at the party last night.

Cincy Groove: Who are some of the bands influences?

Bob Crawford: We all have different influences, but some we have in common are Bob Dylan, Tom Waits, we all grew up listening to punk and hard rock. I like jazz and Bruce Springsteen. So really its a little bit of everything.

Cincy Groove: How many instruments do you play?

Bob Crawford: I play the bass, guitar, a little piano, getting better at it all the time. Then a couple years ago I picked up the trumpet. I’m finally getting to the point where I’m comfortable playing the instrument. Thats what is great about the bus, you can actually practice while the vehicle is moving. I have this trumpet that you can play with headphones on. It makes it a little more difficult to play that way but over the last few months my trumpet playing has gotten much better.

 

Upcoming Avett Brothers tour dates:
For complete show details visit – http://www.theavettbrothers.com
5/14/08 Chicago, IL House of Blues
5/16/08 Newport, KY The Southgate House SOLD OUT!
5/17/08 Nelsonville, OH Nelsonville Art & Music Festival
5/18/08 Cleveland, OH Beachland Ballroom
5/20/08 Ann Arbor, MI The Ark
5/22/08 Grand Rapids, MI The Intersection
5/23/08 Chillicothe, IL Summer Camp 2008
5/25/08 Philadelphia, PA Jam on the River
6/5/08 Scottown, OH Appalachian Uprising
6/6/08 Indianapolis, IN The Vogue
6/7/08 Columbia, MO Blue Note
6/8/08 Lawrence, KS Wakarusa Music & Camping Festival
6/14/08 Manchester, TN Bonnaroo
6/18/08 Glen Allen, VA Innsbrook Pavilion
6/19/08 Norfolk, VA Attucks Theatre
6/20/08 Alexandria, VA The Birchmere
6/21/08 Pittsburgh, PA Three Rivers Arts Festival
7/2/08 Asbury Park, NJ The Stone Pony
7/3/08 Troy, NY Revolution Hall
7/4/08 Sherman, NY Great Blue Heron Festival
7/5/08 Rochester, NY Water Street Music Hall
7/9/08 New York, NY River to River Festival
7/10/08 Dewey Beach, DE Bottle & Cork
7/11/08 Masontown, WV All Good Music Festival
7/12/08 Bristol, TN Paramount Center For The Arts
7/18/08 Somerset, KY Master Musicians Festival
7/26/08 Cary, NC Koka Booth Amphitheatre
7/27/08 Floyd, VA FloydFest
7/29/08 Burlington, VT Higher Ground
7/31/08 Edgartown, MA Outerland
8/2/08 Northampton, MA Iron Horse
8/19/08 Steamboat Springs, CO Strings Music Pavilion
8/23/08 Veneta, OR Secret House Vineyards
8/24/08 Portland, OR Oregon Zoo Amphitheatre
8/30/08 Camp Mather, CA Strawberry Music Festival
9/14/08 Morrison, CO Monolith Festival