Bachman & Bachman: It's A Family Thing
Canadian rock legend Randy Bachman has had many different collaborators over the course of his nearly 60-year career as a solo artist and founding member of both The Guess Who and Bachman Turner Overdrive. For his upcoming tour, however, he’s working alongside someone with whom he’s shared a lifelong connection – his son Tal Bachman.
Emerging from their COVID-19 cohabitation with a full-length album of new songs co-written and recorded last June in Washington, the father/son combo of Bachman and Bachman arrives at FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre March 29th with a show that’s as much about the stories behind the songs as it is the songs themselves. Featuring Randy, creator of some of the biggest pop music hits of the last 50 years, and Tal, a talented singer-songwriter best known for this 1999 chart-topping hit, “She’s So High.” Bachman and Bachman will be performing songs while sharing the often-humorous anecdotes behind a variety of hits, including Guess Who classics like “No Sugar Tonight,” “Undun,” “American Woman,” and “Laughing” and BTO rockers like “Hey You,” “You Ain’t Seen Nothing Yet,” and “Takin’ Care of Business.” It’s an intimate, informative, and fully entertaining concert experience that requires a special kind of audience according to the elder Bachman.
“It’s a totally different kind of show, a totally different feeling when you’re telling stories, said Randy, whose transition into musical storyteller began with the 2002 release of his live semi-unplugged album Every Song Tells A Story. “It can’t be more than 750, 800 or 900 people or it doesn’t work. It’s like doing stand up comedy at a pop festival. You lose them. With this show I get to reconnect with the audience. They have to sit down because the length of some of the stories are long. We get to sit down and tell stories as opposed to standing up for a rock show. We’re lucky we can just bounce back and forth. It makes for a fun show.”
Like a 45-year-old Gordie Howe getting to play professionally alongside his sons Mark and Marty, the 79-year-old Bachman gets the rare opportunity to share the marquee with a son who has the same passion for performing live. It’s a fact not lost on either Bachman.
“We’re like a two-headed monster, we have an instinct between us,” said Randy. “The Howes had that too. You grow up playing hockey with your dad or playing music with your dad, you develop an instinct. You can take the lead, you can join together in harmony, or step back and let the other person shine. We just have such a good rapport of what each is doing or what we can do. For me it’s kind of amazing. When it works it’s really fantastic.”
Tal is equally stoked about the upcoming Bachman and Bachman tour, although putting the show together from such a vast catalogue of songs is going to be a challenge.
“This tour is going to be our first headlining, doing what is supposed to be a new show,” said Tal. “At the moment we don’t really have one planned so we’re not sure what we’re going to do out there. That’s kind of exciting!”
While the Bachmans will be joined on stage by a drummer and bass player, it’s their guitars and their back-and-forth banter that will be the primary focus of the evening.
“We do a mixture of my hits, of Tal’s songs,” said Randy. “We might play them in a different style, or maybe just the two of us playing acoustically. We did a Bachman and Bachman album that might be out by then, so we’ll do a couple of songs from it. It’s just kind of an evening where we’ll be telling stories in an intimate setting. It’s not a big stand-up concert, blow your face off sort of thing. It’s more reminiscing about the music that we’ve done in the past.”
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