LITTLE ROCK Bob Schneider has been a lot of different things in the past two decades: He has been Joe Rockhead, an Ugly American and a Scab, but since 2001, he has been content to just be Bob Schneider, a singer-songwriter happily based in Austin, Texas.
“I can’t even remember when I was in Little Rock last,” Schneider said from the Lone Star State as he prepared for his regular weekly gig at Austin’s legendary Saxon Pub, where he has played most Monday nights for some 13 years. “I remember some of my wildest shows were at the old Juanita’s, and I recall my last show there was a really good time.”
Schneider, 47, ventures to central Arkansas from time to time, assuring himself of a loyal fan base over the years throughout his various performance styles and band names. In the late 1990s, he and his horn-powered group, the Ugly Americans, played many a memorable packeddance-floor show at the old Juanita’s on Main Street when the late Peggy Adams wasbooking shows and was one of Schneider’s biggest fans.
“We’ll be doing a set that’s sort of one-half the best of my career and the other half a potpourri of new stuff from the past three months and stuff I don’t normally play,” he says.“I’ve got over 1,000 songs, and you can only do about 24 in a two-hour show.”
In April, Schneider will release a new album, Burden of Proof, but he’s already working on his next one.
“Albums are like relationships,” he says. “You kind of remember stuff about them and when you made them. I wrote string parts for the one coming in April, so I guess I’ve matured and now have a more adult sound. I enjoy theprocess of writing a song. It’s like working a little puzzle and doesn’t take very long. I also write poetry, and have a couple of published books of poetry, and I do other art. Some of my album covers have been my own artwork.”
Schneider will be bringing a band that includes drums, bass, guitar and keyboard players. He will play acoustic and electric guitars and keyboards.
“The idea is to do something interesting and to do something that feels real,” he says. “I want to be moved. That’s our goal - to do something magical - and that happens sometimes.”
Schneider was born in Michigan and reared in Munich from age 2 until he was 16; his father sang opera. Schneider, however, has never performed in Germany, noting that Germans preferAmericans who are wildly over the top, with boots and cowboy hats or Elvis Presleylike shows.
“I could go over and talk to them in German and sing and stuff, but they would prefer to see David Hasselhoff, the Baywatch star. He’s the biggest thing going there.”
As for catering to his American fans, Schneider says he likes nothing better than stepping on a stage to do his thing.
“My biggest fear is to be boring,” he says. “I’d rather be hated than just arouse indifference in people. My favorite musical experiences have been when I went and saw people and I was afraid. I couldn’t define whatever it was, but it would be goose bumps.
“That’s what I’ll be trying to do, to bring some of that to people.”Bob Schneider
9 p.m. Saturday, The Rev
olution Room, 300 Presi
dent Clinton Ave., Little
Opening: The Cadillac
Admission: $12 advance,
$15 day of show
Info: (501) 823-0090 or
Weekend, Pages 40 on 01/31/2013
Print Headline: Schneider says keeping music real is no Hasselhoff