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Rich Robinson Crowes Alone

Black Crowes guitarist talks live album, spreading his wings

Six months into the Black Crowes hiatus, guitarist Rich Robinson is
rehearsing regularly with a new group of players in his New York
loft and says he no longer sets aside new songs for the Crowes.
“I’m pretty sure they’re going to sound similar, because I wrote
all the songs for the band, but I also can branch out and do things
we might not have done, more poppy things,” he says. “Maybe if I
have a different drummer or a different keyboard player or
something like that, it will have a different flavor. I’ve been
singing on the demos and writing lyrics, but I’m going back and
forth as to whether I want to get a singer or not.”

Robinson is also in the formative stages of a project with the
Los Angeles Philharmonic that Disney hopes will eventually debut at
the opening of a planned symphonic hall in downtown L.A. “It just
stemmed from a curiosity of something I wanted to hear,” he says.
“I wanted to hear what a western symphony proper from Mozart,
Beethoven, Bach — something recognizable to the lay person —
sounded like established by the L.A. Philharmonic. And then fade
into a world music orchestra playing instruments that weren’t
created for this thing — like a chorus of digeridoos — and try to
match them as closely as you can to a tone. And have this
underlying digeridoo with a sitar playing the melody.”

New songs, digeridoos and the hiatus aside, Crowes news still
abounds. The two-CD The Black Crows Live, which Robinson
says captures one of the band’s best tours in its volatile career,
will be released on August 20th. “For the first time, our whole
headlining tour last fall was really us working together as a
band,” he says. “I think it takes time. The new guys come in and
the other four of us have played 2,000 shows together, so it’s not
fair to them. They have to hear all the nuances. We’re horrible
communicators, no one ever talks in our band, but we do musically
and so it’s hard to come in and pick up. That’s only something you
get by playing live.”

Despite Robinson’s projects and his brother, singer Chris’ solo
debut New Earth Mud scheduled for release in September,
the Black Crowes break is still open-ended. “I think towards the
end it was just so fuckin’ miserable,” he says. “Everyone was
fighting, especially me and Chris and then Chris and Steve [drummer
Gorman]. It’s just not fun anymore and that’s why we said, ‘Look
we’re not going to do anything, we’re not going to break up. We’re
going to see what we’re going to do and see where it takes us and
we’ll always leave the door open and maybe get back and maybe we
never will.’ That’s where we left it. I really want everyone to get
along and everyone to be cool and do their thing. I just want it to
be a lot easier.”

The Black Crows Live track listing:

Disc One:

Midnight From the Inside Out
Sting Me
Thick and Thin
Greasy Grass River
Sometimes Salvation
Cursed Diamond
Miracle to Me
Wiser Time
Girl From a Pawnshop

Cosmic Friend

Disc Two:

Black Moon Creeping
Hi Head Blues
Title Song
She Talks to Angels
Twice As Hard
Soul Singing

Hard to Handle

Chris Robinson tour dates:

8/15: Seattle, Showbox
8/17: San Francisco, Bimbo’s 365 Club
8/18: Santa Cruz, CA, The Catalyst
8/19: Los Angeles, El Rey Theater
8/21: Salt Lake City, X-Scape
8/22: Boulder, CO, Boulder Theater

8/24: Minneapolis, Quest Club
8/25: Chicago, Park West
8/27: Detroit, St. Andrews Hall
8/28: Toronto, Phoenix Concert Theater

In This Article: The Black Crowes

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