Bart Crow is releasing "Dandelion" on Sept. 18, 2012.
By Andrew W. Griffin
Red Dirt Report, editor
Posted: September 15, 2012
OKLAHOMA CITY – Since we last spoke to Texas-based singer-songwriter Bart Crow – back in early 2010 – the Bart Crow Band was in the midst of releasing the dark-themed Heartworn Tragedy.
And today? Well, we find Bart Crow has dropped the “band” and has embraced a far sunnier set of musical themes – compared to the gloomier set featured on Heartworn Tragedy.
Crow, a native of Maypearl, Texas and now living in Austin, told Red Dirt Report that he recorded the songs on Dandelion, his first studio recording since the aforementioned Heartworn Tragedy, over the course of about four months, with Justin Pollard (Pat Green’s drummer/co-producer) at the helm.
“It worked out great,” Crow said of working with Pollard. “Justin and I had met a couple of times at various shows we had played together and one day he ran into my manager and talked about the project. Justin threw his name in a hat.”
And that began Crow’s work on what would become the 14-track Dandelion, which comes out this coming Tuesday on the Smith Music label.
“We got in there and hustled,” Crow said of the recording process. “I loved working with (Pollard).”
The results on Dandelion were positive. A mix of love songs, break-up songs and more.
Talking about the dark times he faced leading up to Heartworn Tragedy, he said that Dandelion’s positivity is a reflection on where he is in his life now. No moody songs and brooding as was featured on the last disc. Crow is at a new spot in his life.
Spinning Dandelion we make noted of the increasingly popular “Didn’t Mean to Break Your Heart” or the track “Cold Heart.”
While on the theme of the “heart,” we asked Crow why the “heart” and heart-linked themes are so commonly found in his music.
“I think it’s because that’s where I live from. I try to do everything with my heart,” he said. “I really give my whole heart to write, play, do gigs, run a band and run a business.”
Another standout track is “If I Go, I’m Goin’,” a duet he performed with Macy Maloy, a singer from the Dallas area.
“The song is my first duet,” he said. “It’s a cover song written by Gregory Alan Isakov.” Isakov, a South African-American singer-songwriter of the indie-folk variety had “If I Go, I’m Goin’” featured on an episode of the Showtime David Duchovny vehicle Californication.
Regarding Macy Maloy, Crow said she did a “phenomenal job.”
Added Crow on the Isakov-penned track: “I think the song is gorgeous.”
The first single, “Little Bit Of Luck,” is a simple and appealing midtempo track that has already found a comfortable spot in the Top 5 of the Texas Music charts.
And we were curious about Crow dropping the “band” from Bart Crow Band, the moniker he has been associated with since the mid-2000’s, when he formed the group after leaving the U.S. Army.
“We have a new line-up,” he said, without getting too specific. “Not the core guys anymore. It knid of became pointless those four extra letters (B-A-N-D). Just decided to brand it ‘Bart Crow.’”
Crow will be embarking on a tour this fall that will focus largely on the Texas market while also extending into neighboring states. Crow will hit the Wormy Dog Saloon in Oklahoma City on Nov. 23, 2012.
The live shows are still largely the same, albeit with some new players.
A powerful song he often performs live, “Broken,” which was on Heartworn Tragedy, is a song “about the soldiers who come back from war shattered and broken, their minds a mess,” as he told Red Dirt Report in 2010.
“We play ‘Broken’ live quite a bit,” he said, adding that soldiers give him a lot of positive feedback about the song “all the time.”
“I love it,” Crow said. “They’ll talk about their buddies still in war or stationed in the U.S.”
The song, he said, “has done its job.”
And a current song he is getting feedback on is “I Miss You.”
“It’s not anything crazy. It’s just straight up, ‘I miss you,’” he said. “Just wanting to be home. That’s my bio right now.”
And that wanting to be with his wife and child has a stronger pull than it did before. It’s also resulted in the cozier nature of the songs on Dandelion. In fact, note the song “First of Fall,” a plaintive, slow-burning country-folk rocker fits the album well (and because next week will be the first of fall).
Asked if he’s been to his hometown of Maypearl (a small town in Ellis County, south of Dallas), Crow admitted he had spent the night in the town the night before. You could also tell by talking to him that he was ready to get Dandelion officially released and the new material out to the public.
“I think we did a good job,” Crow said. “We took our time, picked the right songs, got the right studio at the right time. I’m really proud of it. I think it’s really good.”
For more information go to www.bartcrowmusic.com.
Copyright 2012 Red Dirt Report